Seeking new therapies through AI

Almirall, Barcelona Supercomputing Center (BSC) and Nostrum Biodiscovery collaborate to design new protein-protein modulators through Artificial Intelligence.

  • The partnership aims to improve the design of protein-protein modulators through Artificial Intelligence to identify new therapeutic approaches for the treatment of skin diseases.
  • The project received funding from the Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation as part of the EU-funded Recovery, Transformation and Resilience Plan.

BARCELONA, Spain. 5th December, 2023 – Almirall S.A. (BME: ALM), a global pharmaceutical company focused on medical dermatology, today announced a new collaboration with the Barcelona Supercomputing Center-Centro Nacional de Supercomputación (BSC-CNS) and Nostrum Biodiscovery (BSC’s first spin-off) to explore artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) generative approaches to design new protein-protein modulators that will be the basis of new therapies for dermatological diseases.

The collaboration, named ARTIBAND, will extend over a three-year period. Initially, the technology will be developed and trained with data on the public domain. In a second phase, it will be further optimized and applied to the discovery of new protein-protein modulators of Almirall’s interest.

“This new collaboration with BSC and Nostrum Biodiscovery marks a further step in our artificial intelligence and medical dermatology journey. Applying AI to protein-protein modulator design not only discovers new therapeutic approaches but also fundamentally reshapes how we tackle and solve dermatological challenges. This endeavor represents a bold step forward in our commitment to improving lives through groundbreaking research and innovation,” stated Francesc Fernández, Almirall’s Data Science Director.

Almirall and Barcelona Supercomputing Center (BSC) have been collaborating since 2018 in the research program SilicoDerm, a project focused on computational drug design applied to dermatological therapeutic targets. Silicoderm has been the starting point of AI-based tools for drug discovery. “This collaboration, backed by cutting-edge generative artificial intelligence and machine learning, opens new avenues to advance dermatology research. At BSC, we are dedicated to harnessing the power of supercomputing and AI for the greater good, and this partnership exemplifies our commitment to pushing the boundaries of scientific discovery,” noted Víctor Guallar, Barcelona Supercomputing Center’s Chief Scientific Officer.

“As a spin-off from the Barcelona Supercomputing Center, we look forward to bringing our expertise in AI-based drug discovery to this transformative collaboration with Almirall. Together, we aim to revolutionize the treatment landscape for dermatological diseases. Our innovative approach, underpinned by generative AI, has the potential to uncover new therapeutic possibilities that can have a significant impact on patients’ lives,” said Alexis Molina, Nostrum Biodiscovery’s Director of Artificial Intelligence.

The project received funding from the Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation as part of the EU-funded Recovery, Transformation and Resilience Plan.


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