April19 and CAS collaborate to accelerate real-world application of AI to discovery of novel mental health therapeutics

Pairing scientist-curated data and advanced chemical analytics with new deep learning approach to drug discovery shortens pipeline and reduces cost

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM and COLUMBUS, OH (November 17, 2021) – April19 Discovery (April19), an artificial-intelligence-enabled drug discovery company, and CAS, a division of the American Chemical Society that specializes in scientific information solutions, today announced a collaboration to accelerate the identification of novel small-molecule therapeutic drug candidates. As part of this collaboration, CAS is using scientist-curated chemical substance and patent data from the CAS Content CollectionTM, as well as specialized chemical analytics, to prioritize leads generated by April19’s advanced AI-led drug discovery approach. By helping April19 advance the lead compounds that are most innovative and most likely to be patentable, this collaboration accelerates the company’s aspiration to address the growing need for targeted therapeutics to treat mental health conditions by capturing the untapped potential of psychedelics. 

“Accelerating breakthroughs in drug discovery to get innovative, life-changing treatments to market faster and more cost efficiently is a key focus area for CAS,” said Todd Wills, Managing Director, CAS Custom Services. “April19 is pioneering new approaches in this space to address critical needs in mental healthcare and advancing the promise of AI in drug discovery more broadly. We see the opportunity through this collaboration to enhance the efficiency of this AI-driven approach by leveraging CAS’s high-quality scientific data and specialized expertise.”

The estimated number of possible molecules with drug-like properties in the universe is astronomical (~1060). Generative AI approaches offer a powerful opportunity to quickly identify large numbers of these potential therapeutic candidates for a given disease target. Rapidly assessing the novelty of these candidates and the relevant patent landscape provides critical insight needed to prioritize the most viable candidates within these large opportunity pools to achieve efficient commercial development.

“One of the strengths of an AI-driven drug discovery approach is that it allows for the broadest exploration of molecular white space, which is essential to maximize therapeutic opportunities and build an innovative patent portfolio,” said Richard Dallaway, Co-founder of April19. “CAS has the most comprehensive map of known chemical space. Their data collection and unmatched expertise in scientific information management and chemical analytics make them a uniquely valuable partner to help us advance our objectives.”

Results from the organizations’ first engagement demonstrate the impact of the collaboration. Within a set of candidates that passed April19’s initial viability screening criteria, CAS analysts identified a meaningful portion of the compounds as being very innovative. These candidates represent brand new molecular shapes not seen before. Additionally, a limited set of the compounds was identified as being previously disclosed or having a high-risk for overlap with existing patent claims. April19’s Dallaway notes “Prioritizing our candidates for further development based on these insights in the early-stages of our exploration has the potential to save us years of time and millions of dollars as we advance these candidates through the pipeline.”

About April19 Discovery

April19 Discovery is an AI-driven drug-discovery company focused on psychedelic therapeutics. Using its proprietary deep-learning and evolutionary methods, it can virtually screen millions of molecules and generate counter-intuitive, novel, compounds. These novel compounds may lead to much-needed therapies to treat depression, anxiety, addiction cessation, chronic pain and other CNS indications. Learn more at www.april19.ai.

About CAS

CAS is a leader in scientific information solutions, partnering with innovators around the world to accelerate scientific breakthroughs. CAS employs over 1,400 experts who curate, connect, and analyze scientific knowledge to reveal unseen connections. For over 100 years, scientists, patent professionals, and business leaders have relied on CAS solutions and expertise to provide the hindsight, insight, and foresight they need so they can build upon the learnings of the past to discover a better future. CAS is a division of the American Chemical Society. Connect with us at cas.org

Media contact:
Tina Tomeo