BenchSci Blog

177 Startups Using Artificial Intelligence in Drug Discovery

Written by Simon Smith | Nov 8, 2017 2:57:05 PM

Welcome to what I hope is a comprehensive list of startups using machine learning to research and develop drugs. I began this list in November 2017. At that time, it had 37 startups. I have updated it continuously since then. My focus is companies that (1) are new (I'm leaving this purposely vague, but typically founded post-2012); (2) use AI as a key differentiator; (3) develop products or drugs (I exclude service businesses); and (4) have demonstrated traction, such as via at least seed funding.

I group startups here roughly by R&D phase, though I don't use standard terminology (like target discovery, lead optimization, and so forth). This is because it wouldn't capture some of the nuances of what these companies do. For example, it would be harder to reflect the difference between companies repurposing drugs versus generating new molecular entities.

I aim to update this list monthly. I discover new startups through my own research, but also through suggestions. If you want to nominate a company, please post it in the comments or message me on LinkedIn. And now, here's the list:

Contents

  1. Aggregate and synthesize information
  2. Understand mechanisms of disease
  3. Establish biomarkers
  4. Generate data and models
  5. Repurpose existing drugs
  6. Generate novel drug candidates
  7. Validate and optimize drug candidates
  8. Design drugs
  9. Design preclinical experiments
  10. Run preclinical experiments
  11. Design clinical trials
  12. Recruit for clinical trials
  13. Optimize clinical trials
  14. Publish data
  15. Analyze real world evidence

Startups

Aggregate and synthesize information

Amplion

Uses AI to: Synthesize biomedical knowledge and biomarker expertise to guide biomarker strategic planning. Allows researchers to: Ensure an effective mix of biomarkers, establish differentiation, recruit the right patients, and identify the best companion diagnostic opportunities. Founded: 2013. Headquarters: Bend, Oregon, United States.

BioSymetrics

Uses AI to: Process raw phenotypic, imaging, drug, and genomic data sets. Allows researchers to: Integrate rapid analytics and machine learning capabilities into existing business processes to improve care, enhance discoveries, gain insight into business, and enable fast data-driven decisions. Founded: 2015. Headquarters: New York, New York, United States.

Biorelate

Uses AI to: Create curated databases from the analysis of published scientific literature. Allows researchers to: Extract structured biological knowledge to power drug discovery applications. Founded: 2014. Headquarters: Oldham, Oldham, United Kingdom.

Causaly

Uses AI to: Read scientific articles and extract causal associations. Allows researchers to: Search for cause and effect relationships and gather evidence on how biomedical entities interact. Founded: 2017. Headquarters: London, England, United Kingdom.

Data2Discovery

Uses AI to: Find hidden connections and new insights in diverse, linked datasets. Allows researchers to: Understand and treat disease by connecting data in new ways. Founded: 2012. Headquarters: San Francisco, California, United States.

Data4Cure

Uses AI to: Infer and organize knowledge from thousands of genomic, phenotypic, and clinical datasets. Allows researchers to: Identify new targets and biomarkers, repurpose drugs, and identify disease pathways amenable to combination therapy. Founded: 2013. Headquarters: La Jolla, California, United States.

Elucidata Corporation

Uses AI to: Analyze complex biological datasets. Allows researchers to: Standardize and streamline analysis of -omics data from multiple sources. Founded: 2015. Headquarters: Delhi, Delhi, India.

Evid Science

Uses AI to: Build a database of therapy evidence. Allows researchers to: Quickly answer any comparative cost and outcome question. Founded: 2017. Headquarters: El Segundo, California, United States.

Genialis

Uses AI to: Analyze multi-omics next-generation sequencing data for contextual, systems-level insights. Allows researchers to: Reveal previously unseen patterns across large, heterogeneous datasets to predict targets and biomarkers. Founded: 2016. Headquarters: Houston, Texas, United States.

HelixAI

Uses AI to: Respond to verbal questions and requests in a lab setting. Allows researchers to: Increase efficiency, improve lab safety, keep current on relevant new research, and manage inventory. Founded: 2017. Headquarters: Atlanta, Georgia, United States.

Innoplexus

Uses AI to: Generate insights from billions of disparate data points from thousands of data sources. Allows researchers to: Improve decision-making by seeing information in context from biomedical data sources including publications, clinical trials, congresses, and theses. Founded: 2011. Headquarters: Eschborn, Hessen, Germany.

Intellegens

Uses AI to: Learn underlying correlations in fragmented datasets with incomplete information. Allows researchers to: Estimate missing knowledge of how candidate drugs act on proteins, to aid design of new drug cocktails that activate proteins to cure disease. Founded: 2017. Headquarters: Cambridge, Cambridgeshire, United Kingdom.

InveniAI

Uses AI to: Monitor millions of data points for signs of breakthrough events. Allows researchers to: Detect early signals of innovation. Founded: 2017. Headquarters: Guilford, Connecticut, United States.

Iris.ai

Uses AI to: Establish and find the similarity of document "fingerprints" based on a combination of keyword extraction, word embeddings, neural topic modeling, and other natural language understanding techniques. Allows researchers to: Build reading lists faster, with more precision and interdisciplinary inspiration. Founded: 2015. Headquarters: Oslo, Oslo, Norway.

Kyndi

Uses AI to: Analyze large amounts of data fast and provide explainable, auditable results. Allows researchers to: Understand and extract meaning from internal data sets, especially unstructured ones. Founded: 2014. Headquarters: San Mateo, California, United States.

LabTwin

Uses AI to: Understand voice-based commands and transcribe voice-based notes. Allows researchers to: Take notes and organize lab documentation faster and with less effort. Founded: 2018. Headquarters: Berlin, Berlin, Germany.

LabVoice

Uses AI to: Power voice-based interactions. Allows researchers to: Use their voice to query lab equipment and software for information, as well as update records, take notes, and trigger actions. Founded: 2018. Headquarters: Durham, North Carolina, United States.

Linguamatics

Uses AI to: Extract and analyze text. Allows researchers to: Answer a range of life science questions with natural language queries. Founded: 2001. Headquarters: Cambridge, Cambridgeshire, United Kingdom.

Meta

Uses AI to: Analyze and organize biomedical research. Allows researchers to: Receive a personalized feed of the most relevant and important research as it's published. Founded: 2010. Headquarters: Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

Mozi

Uses AI to: Find patterns in biomedical data and infer hypotheses for investigation. Allows researchers to: Upload datasets and have them analyzed in the context of global biomedical knowledge, leading to new diagnostic and treatment strategies, particularly for personalized medicine. Founded: 2016. Headquarters: Shenzhen, Guangdong, China.

Owkin

Uses AI to: Build intelligence from distributed datasets, including through privacy-safe transfer and federated learning. Allows researchers to: Overcome the problem of data-sharing in healthcare to automate diagnostics, predict treatment outcomes, and optimize clinical trials. Founded: 2016. Headquarters: New York, New York, United States.

PatSnap

Uses AI to: Analyze over 114 million chemical structures, clinical trial information, regulatory details, toxicity data, and over 121 million patents and other sources. Allows researchers to: Validate chemical development projects. Founded: 2007. Headquarters: Singapore, Central Region, Singapore.

Percayai

Uses AI to: Organize and prioritize data in a contextual manner, enabling interactive 3D diagrams illustrating biological information. Allows researchers to: Rapidly generate testable hypotheses from complex, omic, and multi-omic data sets. Founded: 2019. Headquarters: St Louis, Missouri, United States.

Plex Research

Uses AI to: Allow for intuitive searches on the world's biomedical research data. Allows researchers to: Find relevant results for drug discovery-related queries such as compounds for a specified target. Founded: 2017. Headquarters: Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States.

Quertle

Uses AI to: Retrieve and visualize relevant results from multiple biomedical data sources. Allows researchers to: Gain a deeper understanding of a topic and avoid missing key information. Founded: 2008. Headquarters: Henderson, Nevada, United States.

Researchably

Uses AI to: Search and organize information in research papers, clinical trial listings, and patents. Allows researchers to: Save time searching for information while receiving more relevant and personalized results. Founded: 2016. Headquarters: Berkeley, California, United States.

Sparrho

Uses AI to: Curate, in combination with human expertise, millions of scientific papers from thousands of publications. Allows researchers to: Stay up-to-date with new scientific publications and patents. Founded: 2013. Headquarters: London, England, United Kingdom.

ThoughtSpot

Uses AI to: Enable natural language search on billions of rows of data from any source. Allows researchers to: Speed analysis of clinical trial results and historical genomics data. Founded: 2012. Headquarters: Sunnyvale, California, United States.

nference

Uses AI to: Extract knowledge in real-time from commercial, scientific, and regulatory literature. Allows researchers to: Identify competitive white space, eliminate blind spots in research, and discover disease similarities by phenotype for clinical trial design. Founded: 2013. Headquarters: Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States.

Understand mechanisms of disease

Aiforia

Uses AI to: Analyze images uploaded to their cloud environment. Allows researchers to: Detect any visible feature or pattern at scale, including in tissues and cells to understand pathophysiology. Founded: 2013. Headquarters: Helsinki, Southern Finland, Finland.

Cambridge Cancer Genomics

Uses AI to: Predict cancer progression from tumor DNA in blood samples. Allows researchers to: Determine treatment response and relapse earlier, and use Bayesian adaptive clinical trial design to increase the success of late stage trials. Founded: 2016. Headquarters: Cambridge, Cambridgeshire, United Kingdom.

CytoReason

Uses AI to: Organize and standardize immune-related gene, protein, cell, and microbiome data into a single, machine-readable, cell-level view of the immune-system. Allows researchers to: Gain novel insights related to mechanisms of disease, clinical markers, and drug discovery and validation. Founded: 2016. Headquarters: Tel Aviv, Tel Aviv, Israel.

Empiric Logic

Uses AI to: Analyze genomics and other biomedical data to identify probable causes of rare and common diseases. Allows researchers to: Gain new insights into drug discovery and support the process of drug repositioning. Founded: 2018. Headquarters: Dublin, Dublin, Ireland.

Euretos

Uses AI to: Analyze 200 omics databases, connecting published literature, experimental data, and clinical data. Allows researchers to: Get insight into how molecular mechanisms influence cell and tissue functions, and how these in turn influence phenotypes and disease pathology. Founded: 2012. Headquarters: Zoetermeer, Zuid-Holland, The Netherlands.

FDNA

Uses AI to: Link phenotypic traits to genetic mutations. Allows researchers to: Discover new clinical signs, symptoms, and genes for biomarkers, and access data to develop, test, and market precision medicines. Founded: 2011. Headquarters: Boston, Massachusetts, United States.

OccamzRazor

Uses AI to: Transform all available data about Parkinson's disease into machine-readable graphs. Allows researchers to: Have a complete map of Parkinson's disease—the "Human Parkinsome"—and use it to better understand how the disease works, identify biomarkers, develop new targets, and evaluate treatments. Founded: 2015. Headquarters: San Francisco, California, United States.

Phenomic AI

Uses AI to: Analyze cell and tissue phenotypes in microscopy data. Allows researchers to: Rapidly and accurately profile single cells in microscopy images. Founded: 2017. Headquarters: Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

Precisionlife

Uses AI to: Find combinations of genomic, phenotypic, and clinical features that define disease risk, prognosis, and therapy response in a complex disease population. Allows researchers to: Find novel drug targets in existing datasets, identify drug repurposing opportunities, and improve biomarker-driven patient stratification strategies. Founded: 2018. Headquarters: Kidlington, Oxfordshire, United Kingdom.

ReviveMed

Uses AI to: Analyze metabolomic data along with other large-scale molecular information such as data from genes, proteins, drugs, and diseases. Allows researchers to: Find disease pathways, novel drug targets, new therapeutic effects for existing drugs, molecular mechanisms for pharmacological effects, and new biomarkers. Founded: 2016. Headquarters: Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States.

Sensyne Health

Uses AI to: Analyze ethically sourced, clinically curated, anonymised patient data from NHS Foundation Trusts. Allows researchers to: Discern potential new physiological pathways and identify subgroups of patients most likely to respond well to treatments. Founded: 2018. Headquarters: Headington, Oxfordshire, United Kingdom.

Structura Biotechnology

Uses AI to: Enable high-throughput structure discovery of proteins and molecular complexes from cryo-EM data. Allows researchers to: Discover and understand the detailed three-dimensional structure of important protein molecules, complexes, and drug targets. Founded: 2016. Headquarters: Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

Establish biomarkers

Ariana Pharma

Uses AI to: Explore complex datasets in order to reveal hidden relationships and to derive new hypotheses. Allows researchers to: Improve identification and validation of biomarker signatures, identify the best patient responder sub-groups and populations at risk of adverse events, and improve clinical trial success rates. Founded: 2003. Headquarters: Paris, Ile-de-France, France.

Biodesix

Uses AI to: Uncover clinically relevant blood-based biomarker patterns and relationships. Allows researchers to: Enable personalized approaches to therapy selection and a better understanding of complex diseases like cancer. Founded: 2005. Headquarters: Broomfield, Colorado, United States.

Biotrillion

Uses AI to: Analyze data from nontraditional sensors such as smartphones, wearables, internet of things devices, and virtual assistants to measure disease development and response to drugs. Allows researchers to: Leverage data from nontraditional sensors for digitally enabled clinical trials. Founded: 2017. Headquarters: San Francisco, California, United States.

Biotx.ai

Uses AI to: Reliably find complex patterns in high-dimensionality biomedical data. Allows researchers to: Predict disease status, stratify patients, and provide decision support in drug development and precision medicine. Founded: 2017. Headquarters: Berlin, Berlin, Germany.

Evoke Neuroscience

Uses AI to: Identify unique neural signatures of Alzheimer’s disease in electroencephalography data. Allows researchers to: Monitor response to Alzheimer's disease treatments, including in clinical trials. Founded: 2009. Headquarters: New York, New York, United States.

Glympse Bio

Uses AI to: Predict the stage and progression of disease by analyzing data from synthetic biomarker-based liquid biopsies. Allows researchers to: Validate drug-target engagement and determine responders and non-responders in clinical trials. Founded: 2015. Headquarters: Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States.

HistoIndex

Uses AI to: Analyze and quantify nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) features for treatment efficacy. Allows researchers to: Improve the efficiency and effectiveness of NASH clinical trials. Founded: 2010. Headquarters: Singapore, Central Region, Singapore.

Syntekabio

Uses AI to: Analyze genomic data related to cancer and other diseases. Allows researchers to: Discover biomarkers associated with drug responses. Founded: 2009. Headquarters: Sunnyvale, California, United States.

Generate data and models

TARA Biosystems

Uses AI to: Generate models from data on mature cardiac tissue engineered from induced-pluripotent stem cells. Allows researchers to: Predict the physiological effects of different drugs for heart conditions. Founded: 2014. Headquarters: New York, New York, United States.

Repurpose existing drugs

Acurastem

Uses AI to: Analyze data from sources including patient stem cells. Allows researchers to: Discover drugs for neurodenerative diseases, including ALS. Founded: 2016. Headquarters: Monrovia, California, United States.

BioXcel Therapeutics

Uses AI to: Find applications for existing approved drugs or clinically validated candidates. Allows researchers to: Develop a pipeline of product candidates in immuno-oncology, neuroscience, and rare diseases. Founded: 2017. Headquarters: Branford, Connecticut, United States.

Biovista

Uses AI to: Analyze data to find non-obvious, mechanism-of-action based associations between compounds, molecular targets, and diseases. Allows researchers to: Reposition late preclinical stage drugs in multiple sclerosis, mitochondrial diseases, oncology, epilepsy and chronic fatigue syndrome / myalgic encephalopathy. Founded: 2005. Headquarters: Charlottesville, Virginia, United States.

Healx

Uses AI to: Match existing drugs with rare diseases. Allows researchers to: Repurpose existing drugs to accelerate treatment of rare diseases. Founded: 2014. Headquarters: Cambridge, Cambridgeshire, United Kingdom.

Lantern Pharma

Uses AI to: Analyze genetic signals and molecular markers for patient response to drugs. Allows researchers to: Find clinical uses for validated cancer treatments whose development has been discontinued. Founded: 2013. Headquarters: Dallas, Texas, United States.

Pharnext

Uses AI to: Screen and reposition known drugs in unrelated indications at new, lower doses. Allows researchers to: Identify synergistic combinations of repositioned drugs for diseases with high unmet medical needs. Founded: 2007. Headquarters: Issy-les-moulineaux, Ile-de-France, France.

Qrativ

Uses AI to: Synthesize knowledge from multiple biomedical sources (using nference technology). Allows researchers to: Discover potential rare disease indications and subsets of patients who may respond favorably to an existing drug. Founded: 2017. Headquarters: Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States.

Recursion Pharmaceuticals

Uses AI to: Conduct experimental biology at scale by testing thousands of compounds on hundreds of cellular disease models in parallel. Allows researchers to: Rapidly identify new indications for many known drugs and shelved assets. Founded: 2013. Headquarters: Salt Lake City, Utah, United States.

Generate novel drug candidates

A2A Pharmaceuticals

Uses AI to: Iterate small molecules to find candidates with optimal properties for a target. Allows researchers to: Design novel treatments for diseases including cancer, bacterial infection, and muscular dystrophy. Founded: 2016. Headquarters: New York, New York, United States.

AI Therapeutics

Uses AI to: Analyze data from next-gen sequencing, genome editing, chemical genomics, and combinational drug screening to find the most appropriate patients to treat with novel therapeutics. Allows researchers to: Develop precision therapeutics for cancer and rare diseases. Founded: 2013. Headquarters: Guilford, Connecticut, United States.

Alphanosos

Uses AI to: Predict synergistic plant mixes. Allows researchers to: Develop plant-based compounds that counteract bacterial infection and restore microbiota equilibrium. Founded: 2014. Headquarters: Goulier, Midi-Pyrenees, France.

Antiverse

Uses AI to: Predict antibody-antigen binding. Allows researchers to: Generate antibody drug candidates in one day. Founded: 2017. Headquarters: Cardiff, Cardiff, United Kingdom.

Arbor Biotechnologies

Uses AI to: Curate and mine gene variants. Allows researchers to: Accelerate discovery of proteins for improving human health. Founded: 2016. Headquarters: Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States.

Arzeda

Uses AI to: Find correlations and patterns that can be used for protein design. Allows researchers to: Design proteins "never before seen in nature." Founded: 2008. Headquarters: Seattle, Washington, United States.

Atomwise

Uses AI to: Predict drug candidates by leveraging a convolutional neural network trained on a huge amount of organic chemistry data. Allows researchers to: Generate novel drug candidates faster (with a number of candidates already in development with partners). Founded: 2012. Headquarters: San Francisco, California, United States.

Auransa

Uses AI to: Generate insights from molecular data for a deep understanding of disease biology and patient subtypes. Allows researchers to: Discover compounds designed to most effectively address significant unmet medical needs for clinically meaningful disease subtypes. Founded: 2014. Headquarters: Palo Alto, California, United States.

BenevolentAI

Uses AI to: Ingest scientific research data sets, then form and qualify hypotheses and generate novel insights. Allows researchers to: Identify novel drug candidates (via life science-focused subsidiary BenevolentBio). Founded: 2013. Headquarters: London, England, United Kingdom.

Berg

Uses AI to: Analyze data from patient samples in both healthy and diseased states to generate novel biomarkers and therapeutic targets. Allows researchers to: Generate therapeutic targets from biological data in an unbiased way, and implement personalized medicine at scale. Founded: 2006. Headquarters: Framingham, Massachusetts, United States.

BioAge Labs

Uses AI to: Analyze omics data related to aging. Allows researchers to: Develop biomarkers and drugs that impact human aging. Founded: 2015. Headquarters: Richmond, California, United States.

BlackThorn Therapeutics

Uses AI to: Generate novel insights into neurobehavioral health from prorietary data sources including brain imaging and functional assessment tools. Allows researchers to: Develop new drugs targeting receptors in dysregulated brain circuits. Founded: 2015. Headquarters: San Francisco, California, United States.

CaroCure

Uses AI to: Predict toxicity to weed out toxic compounds and increase the efficacy of computational drug discovery. Allows researchers to: Discover new drugs for oncology, immuno-oncology, cardiology, and infectious disease. Founded: 2017. Headquarters: Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh, India.

Celsius Therapeutics

Uses AI to: Analyze data from single-cell RNA sequencing. Allows researchers to: Understand genes in specific cells that trigger disease, then develop precision treatments for those diseases along with companion biomarker-based diagnostic tools. Founded: 2018. Headquarters: Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States.

ChemPass

Uses AI to: Generate molecular structures based on user-defined criteria. Allows researchers to: Design novel small organic molecules and scaffolds. Founded: 2016. Headquarters: Budapest, Budapest, Hungary.

Cloud Pharmaceuticals

Uses AI to: Search a virtual chemical space, predict binding affinity and allow filtering for drug-like properties, safety, and synthesizability. Allows researchers to: Speed drug development with a higher success rate and better targeting of hard-to-drug indications. Founded: 2014. Headquarters: Durham, North Carolina, United States.

Clover Therapeutics

Uses AI to: Analyze clinical and genomic data from consenting participants who are members of insurer Clover Health. Allows researchers to: Discover strategies or interventions that can form the basis of new therapies for pharma partners. Founded: 2016. Headquarters: Jersey City, New Jersey, United States.

Cotinga Pharmaceuticals

Uses AI to: Predict biological activity from molecular structures. Allows researchers to: Intervene in pathways that cancer cells use to escape cell death. Founded: 1999. Headquarters: London, England, United Kingdom.

Datavant

Uses AI to: Integrate clinical trial data with real-world evidence and public datasets to eliminate silos of health information. Allows researchers to: Reduce the cost of drug development, and improve the time-to-market and likelihood of success for new drugs. Founded: 2017. Headquarters: San Francisco, California, United States.

Deep Genomics

Uses AI to: Search 69 billion molecules with the goal of generating a library of 1,000 compounds to manipulate cell biology. Allows researchers to: Unlock new classes of antisense oligonucleotide therapies. Founded: 2014. Headquarters: Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

Dyno Therapeutics

Uses AI to: Predict the function of sequences for adeno-associated virus capsids, which are used as vectors for gene therapy. Allows researchers to: Improve and expand the use of gene therapy by programming capsids with improved functions like precision delivery and immune system evasion. Founded: 2018. Headquarters: Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States.

Engine Biosciences

Uses AI to: Uncover gene interactions and biological networks underlying diseases, and test therapies that target them. Allows researchers to: Make analyses and predictions for precision medicine applications. Founded: 2014. Headquarters: San Francisco, California, United States.

Envisagenics

Uses AI to: Analyze RNA data from patients to identify new biomarkers and drug targets. Allows researchers to: Accelerate discovery of RNA therapeutics. Founded: 2014. Headquarters: New York, New York, United States.

Erasca

Uses AI to: Elucidate novel tumor biology and innovative strategies that shut down key cancer pathways. Allows researchers to: Focus on the most promising strategies to tackle essential oncogenes, accelerating development of oncology drug candidates. Founded: 2018. Headquarters: San Diego, California, United States.

Evaxion Biotech

Uses AI to: Identify suitable targets for vaccines and antibodies in complex immunological data. Allows researchers to: Program the immune system to fight off diseases from cancers to hard-to-treat infections. Founded: 2008. Headquarters: Copenhagen, Hovedstaden, Denmark.

Exscientia

Uses AI to: Learn best-practices from drug discovery data and experienced drug hunters. Allows researchers to: Generate drug candidates in roughly one-quarter the time of traditional approaches. Founded: 2012. Headquarters: Oxford, Oxfordshire, United Kingdom.

GTN

Uses AI to: Simulate, filter, and search for molecules with "Generative Tensorial Networks." Allows researchers to: Discover molecules otherwise hidden from view. Founded: 2017. Headquarters: London, England, United Kingdom.

Genesis Therapeutics

Uses AI to: Accurately predict ADMET properties. Allows researchers to: Use neural networks and biophysical simulation to generate and optimize molecules. Founded: 2019. Headquarters: South San Francisco, California, United States.

Globavir

Uses AI to: Generate novel insights and predictions from biological data, chemical data, and curated databases of approved drugs. Allows researchers to: Leverage existing data to develop therapies (currently focused on infectious disease diagnostics and treatments). Founded: 2011. Headquarters: Los Altos, California, United States.

Gritstone Oncology

Uses AI to: Predict immune targets for cancer immunotherapy using a model trained on extensive human tumor data. Allows researchers to: Develop new approaches to drive potent, tumor-specific immune responses that provide therapeutic benefit to a large number of cancer patients. Founded: 2015. Headquarters: Emeryville, California, United States.

Iktos

Uses AI to: Design novel compounds that optimize for specific objectives. Allows researchers to: Improve the success rate of in silico to in vitro translation. Founded: 2016. Headquarters: Paris, Ile-de-France, France.

Insilico Medicine

Uses AI to: Predict pharmacological properties of drugs and supplements, and identify novel biomarkers. Allows researchers to: Generate novel therapeutic candidates, with a focus on aging and age-related diseases. Founded: 2014. Headquarters: Rockville, Maryland, United States.

Insitro

Uses AI to: Generate models from large, high-quality datasets. Allows researchers to: Address key problems in the drug discovery and development process. (Not clear on their positioning at this point, but recent partnerships suggest they aim to generate drug candidates.) Founded: 2018. Headquarters: South San Francisco, California, United States.

LabGenius

Uses AI to: Provide the brains for EVA, a smart robotic platform that can design, conduct, and learn from its own experiments. Allows researchers to: Develop next-generation protein therapeutics, including by optimizing multiple drug properties simultaneously. Founded: 2012. Headquarters: London, England, United Kingdom.

Menten Biotechnology Labs

Uses AI to: Optimize activity, specificity, and stability of peptides, proteins, and enzymes. Allows researchers to: Create novel peptide therapeutics, proteins for drug delivery, and enzymes. Founded: 2018. Headquarters: Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

Micar Innovation

Uses AI to: Shorten discovery and screening, lead optimization, and ADMET studies. Allows researchers to: Create "build-to-buy" partnerships, forming startups around new drug discovery programs that pharmaceutical companies can then acquire if successful. Founded: 2016. Headquarters: Sofia, Grad Sofiya, Bulgaria.

Mind the Byte

Uses AI to: Analyze data in a SaaS-based bioinformatics platform for computational drug discovery. Allows researchers to: Leverage big data and machine learning for every stage of the drug discovery process, from target-identification to post-marketing activities, with no need for their own hardware infrastructure. Founded: 2011. Headquarters: Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain.

Nanna Therapeutics

Uses AI to: Analyze data from its "Totally Integrated Medicines Engine" platform, which also leverages microfluidics and nanofabrication. Allows researchers to: Create drugs to treat age-related diseases and improve longevity, with a strong focus on mitochondria. Founded: 2012. Headquarters: Cambridge, Cambridgeshire, United Kingdom.

Neon Therapeutics

Uses AI to: Identify, predict, and select the most therapeutically relevant neoantigen (newly formed antigen not previously recognized by the immune system) targets associated with a patient’s tumor. Allows researchers to: Develop novel neoantigen-based therapeutics for cancer. Founded: 2015. Headquarters: Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States.

NuMedii

Uses AI to: Discover connections between drugs and diseases at a systems level by analyzing hundreds of millions of raw human, biological, pharmacological, and clinical data points. Allows researchers to: Find drug candidates and biomarkers predictive of efficacy for diseases. Founded: 2008. Headquarters: Menlo Park, California, United States.

Nuritas

Uses AI to: Predict the therapeutic potential of food-derived bioactive peptides. Allows researchers to: Cost-effectively develop highly targeted treatments for specific diseases from natural food sources. Founded: 2014. Headquarters: Dublin, Dublin, Ireland.

Pharos iBT

Uses AI to: Predict properties of compounds and enable low-cost and efficient drug development. Allows researchers to: Develop new drugs for orphan and rare diseases. Founded: 2016. Headquarters: Anyang, Kyonggi-do, South Korea.

ProteinQure

Uses AI to: Design protein drugs through reinforcement learning. Allows researchers to: Target a wider array of binding sites, target diseases with high specificity, and create compounds that are easier to synthesize and test. Founded: 2017. Headquarters: Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

Quantitative Medicine

Uses AI to: Analyze many drug discovery factors simultaneously, such as effects, side effects, and toxicity. Allows researchers to: Solve complex drug discovery optimization problems. Founded: 2012. Headquarters: Vero Beach, Florida, United States.

Qulab

Uses AI to: Perform de novo molecular design and molecular simulation. Allows researchers to: Automate design of small molecule drugs. Founded: 2017. Headquarters: Los Angeles, California, United States.

Relay Therapeutics

Uses AI to: Understand protein motion—how protein shape influences health and disease. Allows researchers to: Design compounds that can target and stabilize proteins in a normal shape. Founded: 2016. Headquarters: Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States.

Resonant Therapeutics

Uses AI to: Assess and prioritize a library of drug candidates derived from analyzing tumor microenvironments. Allows researchers to: Simultaneously discover novel targets and functional antibodies for cancer. Founded: 2014. Headquarters: Santa Barbara, California, United States.

SEngine Precision Medicine

Uses AI to: Find novel small molecules that can bind and inhibit targets that are specific to cancer cells. Allows researchers to: Develop targeted therapies for the three most common cancer-causing genes: MYC, TP53, and KRAS. Founded: 2015. Headquarters: Seattle, Washington, United States.

Sirenas

Uses AI to: Analyze metabolomic and bioassay datasets to uncover insights into human health and disease, as well as potential new chemical scaffolds. Allows researchers to: Find new therapeutic targets and biomarkers for diseases and aging, as well as novel compounds that can provide the foundation for new drugs. Founded: 2011. Headquarters: San Diego, California, United States.

Spring Discovery

Uses AI to: Accelerate experimentation for discovering therapies for aging and related diseases. Allows researchers to: Uncover new therapies for diseases of aging by targeting the biological processes of aging itself. Founded: 2017. Headquarters: Palo Alto, California, United States.

Standigm

Uses AI to: Analyze biomedical data to predict how drug compounds would interact with people in the real world. Allows researchers to: Generate novel compounds satisfying desired properties and discover hidden indications and pathways. Founded: 2015. Headquarters: Seoul, Seoul-t'ukpyolsi, South Korea.

Systems Oncology

Uses AI to: Aggregate and mine disparate biomedical datasets to reveal novel vulnerabilities in cancer. Allows researchers to: Exploit novel cancer vulnerabilities with innovative treatments. Founded: 2016. Headquarters: Scottsdale, Arizona, United States.

TwoXAR

Uses AI to: Screen compound libraries for efficacy against a disease, identify new drug candidates from a public library, and identify biologic targets. Allows researchers to: Speed and reduce costs for drug discovery. Founded: 2014. Headquarters: Mountain View, California, United States.

Unnatural Products

Uses AI to: Analyze data on prospective macrocycle therapies (which combine benefits of large biomolecules, such as high selectivity, with small molecules, such as ease of administration). Allows researchers to: Develop drugs for currently undruggable targets. Founded: 2017. Headquarters: Santa Cruz, California, United States.

Verge Genomics

Uses AI to: Map hundreds of genes that cause a disease, then find drugs that target all at once. Allows researchers to: Find cures for complex diseases—especialy brain diseases—that involve a network of genes. Founded: 2015. Headquarters: San Francisco, California, United States.

Vyasa

Uses AI to: Analyze concepts in unstructured documents and perform advanced chemistry analysis. Allows researchers to: Mine data in electronic laboratory notebooks, find unexpected relationships between mechanisms of action and disease, and generate novel compounds optimized for specific variables. Founded: 2016. Headquarters: Newburyport, Massachusetts, United States.

X-37

Uses AI to: Perform structure-based drug design and discovery (using AtomNet from Atomwise). Allows researchers to: Develop drugs for hard-to-target proteins with high therapeutic value. Founded: 2019. Headquarters: San Francisco, California, United States.

Xbiome

Uses AI to: Analyze the gut microbiome. Allows researchers to: Modulate the microbiome to develop novel drugs. Founded: 2017. Headquarters: Shenzhen, Guangdong, China.

e-Therapeutics

Uses AI to: Analyze complex networks of molecular interactions in cells. Allows researchers to: Acquire or in-license drug candidates. Founded: 2003. Headquarters: Hanborough, Oxfordshire, United Kingdom.

uBiome

Uses AI to: Analyze data from the world's largest database of microbiomes in the world. Allows researchers to: Develop new treatments inspired by novel insights into human-microbe relationships. Founded: 2012. Headquarters: San Francisco, California, United States.

Validate and optimize drug candidates

Accutar

Uses AI to: Learn physical and chemical nature of biological systems from protein crystal structure data. Allows researchers to: Predict drug pocket side chain conformation, drug docking, and chemical compound characteristics. Founded: 2015. Headquarters: Shanghai, Shanghai, China.

Acellera

Uses AI to: Predict protein-ligand binding. Allows researchers to: Select better drug candidates, exclude toxic or reactive molecules, and improve ADMET profiles. Founded: 2006. Headquarters: London, England, United Kingdom.

InVivo AI

Uses AI to: Integrate structural, target, and pathway-based descriptors to generate toxicological profiles of small molecule drugs in silico. Allows researchers to: Reduce the time and cost of preclinical decision-making while increasing the likelihood of success for compounds selected for clinical trials. Founded: 2018. Headquarters: Montréal, Quebec, Canada.

Interprotein

Uses AI to: Predict the impact of ligands on protein-protein interactions. Allows researchers to: Increase the success rate of small molecule drugs targeting protein-protein interactions. Founded: 2001. Headquarters: Osaka, Osaka, Japan.

NetraMark

Uses AI to: Understand how patient subpopulations respond to treatments. Allows researchers to: Match drugs to patients, with the potential to extract information from failing or failed clinical trials and revive the prospects for at-risk drugs. Founded: 2015. Headquarters: Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

Reverie Labs

Uses AI to: Predict potency and pharmacokinetic properties of small molecules, and conceive new molecules to optimize for them. Allows researchers to: Accelerate preclinical drug development by generating and improving leads. Founded: 2017. Headquarters: Boston, Massachusetts, United States.

Synsight

Uses AI to: Analyze data from molecular modeling and high-content screening. Allows researchers to: Solve complex systems like protein-protein interactions and undersand modes of action in biological sytems. Founded: 2013. Headquarters: Évry, Ile-de-France, France.

Turbine

Uses AI to: Simulate experiments. Allows researchers to: Gain insights into how a drug works from the preclinical phase through phases I, II, and III. Founded: 2015. Headquarters: Budapest, Budapest, Hungary.

VERISIM Life

Uses AI to: Predict pharmacology of potential new drug candidates through pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic modeling and simulation. Allows researchers to: Narrow the number of drug candidates that offer anticipated effects for specified diseases. Founded: 2017. Headquarters: San Francisco, California, United States.

XtalPi

Uses AI to: Predict the crystalized form a drug will take. Allows researchers to: Understand the potential safety, stability, and efficacy of drug candidates. Founded: 2014. Headquarters: Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States.

Design drugs

Cyclica

Uses AI to: Consider the polypharmacology, pharmacokinetics, and structural pharmacogenomics of molecules. Allows researchers to: Explain mechanisms of action, and de novo design or optimize multi-targeted drug-like molecules with preferred pharmacokinetic properties while minimizing off-target interactions. Founded: 2013. Headquarters: Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

Fetch Biosciences

Uses AI to: Understand structure-to-function relationships underpinning existing biomolecules. Allows researchers to: Engineer novel biomolecules with optimized functions. Founded: 2019. Headquarters: Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

MAbSilico

Uses AI to: Predict antibody binding, similarity, and cross-reactivity. Allows researchers to: Characterize, find substitutes for, and identify potential off-target effects of a specified antibody. Founded: 2017. Headquarters: Nouzilly, Centre, France.

Molecule.one

Uses AI to: Predict whether a particular chemical reaction will work. Allows researchers to: Input a chemical structure and receive reactions and synthesis pathways for it. Founded: 2016. Headquarters: Warsaw, Mazowieckie, Poland.

Molomics

Uses AI to: Design structurally new small molecules for validated biological targets. Allows researchers to: Collaborate with each other (using what they call "Human Collective Intelligence") and AI to jointly develop safer and more effective therapeutics. Founded: 2015. Headquarters: Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain.

Numerate

Uses AI to: Analyze public and private data, with a claim to work with less data, noisier data, and more biased data than alternative approaches. Allows researchers to: Predict how a potential drug will behave in the lab and the body, with a focus on neurodegeneration, cardiovascular disease, and oncology. Founded: 2007. Headquarters: San Bruno, California, United States.

Pending.ai

Uses AI to: Learn chemistry from a database of more than 130 million compounds, 20 million reactions, and 146,000 proteins. Allows researchers to: Generate novel molecules with neural networks, do structure-based drug design, plan chemical synthesis, and conduct high-throughput chemistry. Founded: 2018. Headquarters: Wollongong, New South Wales, Australia.

Pepticom

Uses AI to: Design peptides based on a target's solved crystal structure. Allows researchers to: Speed development of peptide drugs, which have high selectivity and low toxicity. Founded: 2011. Headquarters: Jerusalem, Yerushalayim, Israel.

Peptone

Uses AI to: Predict protein features and characteristics. Allows researchers to: Reduce complexity in protein design, detect production and characterisation issues, and discover novel protein features. Founded: 2018. Headquarters: London, England, United Kingdom.

Remedium

Uses AI to: Identify minimum functional units of protein drug candidates by building specific predictive models from customized data sets. Allows researchers to: Reduce dependence on mass screenings, both virtual and chemical, through rapid selection of small molecule agonists, antagonists, or functional mimics of protein drug candidates. Founded: 2017. Headquarters: Montréal, Quebec, Canada.

Schrödinger

Uses AI to: Ideate, optimize, and analyze drug candidates. Allows researchers to: Evaluate chemical compounds in silico ahead of synthesis and assay. Founded: 1990. Headquarters: New York, New York, United States.

TeselaGen

Uses AI to: Make and modify DNA. Allows researchers to: Prototype and edit recombinant molecules for vaccines and biologic medicines. Founded: 2011. Headquarters: San Francisco, California, United States.

Virvio

Uses AI to: Optimize synthetic biotherapies that are easy to manufacture, shelf stable, and outperform known antibodies. Allows researchers to: Mimic proven monoclonal antibodies with safer, more effective biologic alternatives. Founded: 2015. Headquarters: Seattle, Washington, United States.

Design preclinical experiments

BenchSci

Uses AI to: Decode open- and closed-access data on reagents such as antibodies and present published figures with actionable insights. Allows researchers to: Reduce time, money, and uncertainty in planning experiments. Founded: 2015. Headquarters: Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

Desktop Genetics

Uses AI to: Determine biological variables influencing CRISPR guide design. Allows researchers to: Improve activity and reduce experimental bias in the selection of guides for CRISPR libraries. Founded: 2012. Headquarters: London, England, United Kingdom.

Run preclinical experiments

Arctoris

Uses AI to: Generate novel insights from high-quality cancer research data gathered by a robotic system. Allows researchers to: Configure experiments remotely and have them executed in a fully automated cloud laboratory. Founded: 2016. Headquarters: Oxford, Oxfordshire, United Kingdom.

Berkeley Lights

Uses AI to: Automate selection, manipulation, and analysis of cells. Allows researchers to: Expedite development of cell lines and automate manufacturing of cellular therapeutics. Founded: 2011. Headquarters: Emeryville, California, United States.

Emerald Cloud Lab

Uses AI to: Conduct experiments in an automated lab exactly as specified. Allows researchers to: Run experiments in a central lab from anywhere in the world. Founded: 2010. Headquarters: South San Francisco, California, United States.

Strateos

Uses AI to: Automate sample analysis with a robotic cloud laboratory. Allows researchers to: Generate needed data quickly and reliably with an outsourced, on-demand, automated lab. Founded: 2012. Headquarters: Menlo Park, California, United States.

Synthace

Uses AI to: Build models to understand complex biological systems within Antha, its language and software platform for biology experiments. Allows researchers to: Optimize, reproduce, automate, and scale experiment workflows. Founded: 2011. Headquarters: London, England, United Kingdom.

Design clinical trials

BullFrog AI

Uses AI to: Predict which patients will respond to therapies in development. Allows researchers to: Advance therapies that fail phase 3 studies. Founded: 2017. Headquarters: Boyds, Maryland, United States.

GNS Healthcare

Uses AI to: Transform diverse streams of biomedical and healthcare data into computer models representative of individual patients. Allows researchers to: Deliver personalized medicine at scale, by revealing optimal health interventions for individual patients. Founded: 2000. Headquarters: Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States.

Intelligencia

Uses AI to: Estimate the risk of clinical trials, and interpret the multitude of factors that contribute to that risk. Allows researchers to: De-risk drug development at the clinical trial stage. Founded: 2017. Headquarters: New York, New York, United States.

Keen Eye Technologies

Uses AI to: Empower pathologists to access new insights in biomedical data. Allows researchers to: Increase diagnostics sensitivity and find predictive signatures of drug response. Founded: 2015. Headquarters: Paris, Ile-de-France, France.

Nucleai

Uses AI to: Analyze features in pathology images more efficiently and find hidden patterns within. Allows researchers to: Match patients to the right drugs based on novel pathology-based insights into which drugs might be most effective for their disease. Founded: 2017. Headquarters: Tel Aviv, Tel Aviv, Israel.

PathAI

Uses AI to: Improve pathology analysis. Allows researchers to: Identify patients that would benefit from novel therapies. Founded: 2016. Headquarters: Boston, Massachusetts, United States.

Perceiv Research

Uses AI to: Identify subpopulations of interest from heterogeneous data for complex diseases. Allows researchers to: Improve treatment success with appropriate subject selection for clinical trials. Founded: 2018. Headquarters: Montréal, Quebec, Canada.

Reveal Biosciences

Uses AI to: Automate histopathology. Allows researchers to: Stratify patients for clinical trials. Founded: 2012. Headquarters: San Diego, California, United States.

Trials.ai

Uses AI to: Optimize clinical trial study design. Allows researchers to: Make it easier for patients to enroll and engage in clinical trials, eliminate unnecessary clinical operations burdens, and gain real-time insight into study health. Founded: 2016. Headquarters: San Diego, California, United States.

Recruit for clinical trials

Antidote.me

Uses AI to: Make sense of unorganized and unstructured data about clinical trials. Allows researchers to: Enrol more patients in appropriate trials. Founded: 2010. Headquarters: London, England, United Kingdom.

Clinithink

Uses AI to: Transform unstructured clinical notes into rich structured data. Allows researchers to: Increase the speed of screening eligible subjects for clinical trials against trial-specific inclusion and exclusion criteria. Founded: 2009. Headquarters: London, England, United Kingdom.

Deep 6 AI

Uses AI to: Analyze medical records to find patients for clinical trials. Allows researchers to: Accelerate patient recruitment to complete clinical trials faster. Founded: 2015. Headquarters: Pasadena, California, United States.

Deep Lens

Uses AI to: Classify digital pathology images. Allows researchers to: Identify and triage patients for clinical trials at the time of diagnosis. Founded: 2017. Headquarters: Columbus, Ohio, United States.

Inato

Uses AI to: Screen clinical trial sites and investigators at scale. Allows researchers to: Select appropriate sites to improve patient recruitment rates and accelerate clinical trials. Founded: 2016. Headquarters: Paris, Ile-de-France, France.

Massive Bio

Uses AI to: Match cancer patients with active clinical trials. Allows researchers to: Facilitate oncology clinical trial enrollment. Founded: 2014. Headquarters: New York, New York, United States.

Mendel.ai

Uses AI to: Automate matching cancer patients to clinical trials through personal medical history and genetic analysis. Allows researchers to: Expedite clinical trial enrollment for cancer treatments. Founded: 2016. Headquarters: San Jose, California, United States.

Notable

Uses AI to: Automate evaluating the impact of drug combinations on cancer cells. Allows researchers to: Prioritize drugs for patients with cancer, including to ensure they're enrolled in the most appropriate clinical trials. Founded: 2014. Headquarters: Foster City, California, United States.

Tempus

Uses AI to: Analyze clinical and molecular data at scale. Allows researchers to: Identify clinical trial matches for patients that fit their molecular and phenotypic profile. Founded: 2015. Headquarters: Chicago, Illinois, United States.

Optimize clinical trials

AiCure

Uses AI to: Visually confirm medication ingestion via smartphone. Allows researchers to: Improve medication adherence in clinical trials. Founded: 2009. Headquarters: New York, New York, United States.

Athelas

Uses AI to: Analyze cancer biomarkers in 60 seconds from a drop of blood using an at-home device slightly bigger than an Amazon Echo. Allows researchers to: Optimize oncology drug development with a biomarker monitoring platform and millions of patient datapoints. Founded: 2016. Headquarters: Mountain View, California, United States.

Brite Health

Uses AI to: Analyze structured and unstructured clinical trial participant data. Allows researchers to: Reduce clinical trial dropout rates through personalized communication. Founded: 2015. Headquarters: Palo Alto, California, United States.

Imagia

Uses AI to: Analyze radiological images to produce clinically actionable information. Allows researchers to: Predict a patient's disease progression and treatment response, for clinical trial stratification and companion diagnostics. Founded: 2015. Headquarters: Montréal, Quebec, Canada.

Medable

Uses AI to: Model and predict trial success and identify and prioritize sites. Allows researchers to: Run digital trials through an end-to-end cloud platform that allows patients, sites, CROs, and sponsors to function as team. Founded: 2012. Headquarters: Palo Alto, California, United States.

WinterLight Labs

Uses AI to: Assess and monitor cognitive health by analyzing a short speech sample. Allows researchers to: Identify patients, screen patients, and evaluate response to therapy for clinical trials of mental health treatments. Founded: 2015. Headquarters: Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

nQ Medical

Uses AI to: Find hidden health signals in data from personal devices such as laptops and smartphones. Allows researchers to: Optimize clinical trials for neurological diseases, including through better, faster identification of ideal study participants, less in-clinic observation, improved compliance, and earlier measure of drug impact. Founded: 2016. Headquarters: Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States.

Publish data

Deep Intelligent Pharma

Uses AI to: Make the medical writing process more efficient and creative (amongst other things). Allows researchers to: Save time producing documents, including regulatory documents, while ensuring content quality and data accuracy. Founded: 2017. Headquarters: Wangjing, Beijing, China.

sciNote

Uses AI to: Write a draft scientific manuscript based on provided data. Allows researchers to: Get a "head start" when writing a scientific manuscript to submit for publishing. Founded: 2014. Headquarters: Middleton, Wisconsin, United States.

Analyze real world evidence

Aetion

Uses AI to: Analyze medical and pharmacy claims data. Allows researchers to: Understand which treatments work best for which patients at what times. Founded: 2013. Headquarters: New York, New York, United States.

Concerto HealthAI

Uses AI to: Extract insights from data on oncology patients' experience with drugs. Allows researchers to: Accelerate the generation of evidence for new therapeutic approaches. Founded: 2017. Headquarters: Boston, Massachusetts, United States.

And there you have it, 177 startups using AI in drug discovery. Did I get anything wrong in the descriptions? Please let me know in the comments. Craving more information? See my posts on pharma companies using AI in drug discovery and AI in drug discovery trends and statistics.

Credits: Additional data provided by Crunchbase. Logos provided by Clearbit.