Intelligent CIO North America Issue 31 | Page 65


Bayer to work with Google Cloud on accelerating drug discovery

Bayer AG and Google Cloud have announced a collaboration to drive early drug discovery that will apply Google Cloud ' s Tensorflow Processing Units ( TPUs ), which are custom-developed accelerators designed to run cuttingedge Machine Learning models and computationally intensive workloads , to help accelerate and scale Bayer ' s quantum chemistry calculations .

The theory of quantum mechanics applied to computer-aided drug discovery enables the in-silico modelling of biological and chemical systems with high accuracy – with the potential to help identify novel drug candidates .
The objectives of the collaboration are to accelerate and scale quantum chemistry calculations using Google Cloud ' s TPUs and to demonstrate fully quantum mechanical modelling of protein-ligand interactions . The results will determine the scientific and economic viability of largescale density functional theory calculations for practical applications .
" Bayer ' s aspiration to be among the leading innovators drives us to continue to invest in novel and disruptive technologies to solve complex problems ," said Bijoy Sagar , Chief Information and Digital Transformation Officer at Bayer AG . " Partnering with Google Cloud on TPU powered quantum chemistry complements our ambition to work with industry leaders and experts to quickly deliver on Digital Transformation ."
" Accelerating drug discovery may be one of the most important applications for AI and high-performance computing in the healthcare industry ," said Thomas Kurian , CEO of Google Cloud . " Bringing Bayer ' s powerful research and development capabilities together with our industryleading infrastructure has the potential to unlock new discoveries – with greater accuracy and speed – helping to get new medicines to patients faster ."
Increasing R & D efficiency to accelerate development of impactful medicines for patients in need is central to Bayer ' s innovation strategy .
" By combining Google Cloud ' s computing power with Bayer ' s leading expertise in drug discovery we intend to unleash the potential of large-scale quantum chemistry ," said Marianne De Backer , Head of Strategy , Business Development and Licensing / Open Innovation and Member of the Executive Committee , Pharmaceuticals Division at Bayer AG .
" Working with industry leaders and pioneers to leverage scientific advancements fuelled by digital innovations is essential to the present and future of patient care ." p
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