News

BenevolentAI announces scientific collaboration with UC San Diego to investigate Cerebral Cavernous Malformations

Joint partnership will focus on developing a therapy for CCM - a highly rare disease that currently has no effective treatment

London, February 12, 2020: BenevolentAI, the leader in the creation and application of AI and machine learning to transform the way medicines are discovered and developed, today announced it has entered a partnership with the University of California San Diego to collaborate on a new approach to develop non-invasive therapeutic treatments for cerebral cavernous malformations (CCM), a disease that causes the development of hemorrhagic vascular lesions in the brain and spinal cord.

The collaboration, supported by the Angioma Alliance charity and funded by the Be Brave for Life Foundation, will aim to identify new genes responsible for development and progression of CCM disease and their implications in cardiovascular biology. BenevolentAI will apply its machine learning and data science models to identify new targets associated with this rare and complex disease for which the only current treatment option is brain surgery.

“We are excited to enter this partnership with UC San Diego. Collaboration is key in scientific research if we are to truly impact the way medicines are developed, and design treatments that are more effective for patients,” said Andrea Taddei, Senior Principal Scientist, BenevolentAI. “We hope the new knowledge created from this project will have a significant impact on better understanding brain vascular malformations and as such has potential to contribute to designing new drug-based approaches for CCM patients.”

“In a highly collaborative environment, we are integrating bioinformatics, AI-based technology and experimental models to inform aspects of human cardiovascular cell-biology and disease directly,” said Miguel Lopez-Ramirez, PhD, assistant professor at UC San Diego School of Medicine. “New knowledge from this project may have a significant and direct impact on the understanding of CCM pathogenesis and the potential to provide the rationale for non-invasive therapy to reduce the lifelong risk of stroke in CCM patients.”

Angioma Alliance is the patient support organization for those affected by Cerebral Cavernous Malformations. Amy Akers, Chief Scientific Officer of Angioma Alliance shares, “the CCM patient community is one with an unmet clinical need – while surgical intervention is appropriate for some, a therapeutic intervention capable of preventing, shrinking lesions or stopping lesion activity would be of benefit to our entire community. We are delighted to support this collaborative research project and eager to further elucidate the biology of this complex and devastating disease, and to translate those findings to real treatments for our patients.”

The Benevolent Platform® ingests scientific literature at scale, to derive contextual relationships between genes, diseases, drugs and biological pathways leading to the proposal of novel/optimal drug targets. The Platform supports scientists to unlock new relationships and create new knowledge between diseases and symptoms, drugs and their effect and patients who may respond best to treatment. It focuses on three key areas; target identification, molecular design and precision medicine, to better understand the underlying mechanisms of disease and to develop new and more effective treatments for the millions of patients who need them.



Notes to editors

For more information, please contact
press@benevolent.ai

About BenevolentAI

BenevolentAI, founded in 2013, is an AI company developing and applying advanced technologies to accelerate the journey from data to medicine. The company combines the power of computational medicine and advanced AI with the principles of open systems and cloud computing to transform the way drugs are designed, developed, tested and brought to market.  The company has developed the ‘Benevolent Platform’, the world’s only end-to-end computational and experimental platform for drug discovery that’s spans data ingestion to clinical development

BenevolentAI is HQ’d in London with a research facility in Cambridge (UK) and further offices in New York and Belgium. BenevolentAI has active R&D drug programmes from discovery to PhaseIIb in disease areas such as ALS, Parkinson’s, Ulcerative Colitis and Sarcopenia.

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