Booz Allen Hamilton awarded the 2019 INFORMS Prize for Operations Research

eurekalert | April 15, 2019

Booz Allen Hamilton awarded the 2019 INFORMS Prize for Operations Research
The leading international association for operations research and analytics professionals, announced that Booz Allen Hamilton has been awarded the 2019 INFORMS Prize for their pioneering and enduring integration of operations research (O.R.) and analytics programs into their organization. Recognizing the increasing role that O.R. and analytics was playing in the future of their clients' missions, Booz Allen consolidated their firm-wide O.R. talent into a single, centralized organization to enhance cross-disciplinary exchanges as well as accelerate internal research and development projects. This new practice, Booz Allen's Analytics Practice, integrated traditional O.R. practitioners from its Defense business with experts in high-performance computing from its National Security business and solution architects from its Civil and Commercial businesses. Together, Booz Allen's team of O.R. practitioners have pioneered the application of data science to minimize vaccine production variability, detect pharmaceutical safety issues, prevent entitlement fraud, and disrupt threat networks. Booz Allen has also repeatedly incorporated O.R. into its internal culture to achieve efficiencies and enhance employee and customer experiences. Some of firm's notable programs include the Data Science Bowl, one of the largest data science-for-social-good competition in the world. Booz Allen also established the Data Science 5K, an internal workforce development program that has rapidly grown Booz Allen's data science talent by more than 1,600 data scientists in just the past three years.

Spotlight

This paper, authored by Alireza Shabani, Founder & CEO of Qulab, describes the necessary computational architecture for pharmaceutical firms to accelerate R&D and drug discovery, especially utilizing special purpose silicon and quantum processors.


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Iktos and The University of Dundee, Drug Discovery Unit (DDU) Announce a Collaboration to Use AI for Drug Design and Retrosyntheis

Iktos | December 20, 2021

Iktos, a company specialized in Artificial Intelligence for new drug design, and The Drug Discovery Unit (DDU), School of Life Sciences, The University of Dundee, focused on the discovery of therapeutics for neglected diseases and the translation of novel biology through small molecule drug discovery, announced entering a collaboration to apply Iktos’s generative modelling artificial intelligence (AI) technology in one of DDU’s drug discovery programs. Under the agreement, Iktos will apply its de novo ligand and structure-based generative modelling technologies, its AI-based retrosynthesis analysis and planning tool Spaya™, and know-how complementing DDU’s drug discovery capabilities to expedite the identification of potential pre-clinical candidates and to identify additional novel chemical matter with suitable properties. The DDU was established in 2006 to respond to a lack of drug targets identified for neglected tropical diseases being translated into therapeutics for diseases impacting the poorest people in the world. The DDU translates basic science into lead compounds to validate putative drug targets, to use as tools to investigate disease pathways and, when appropriate, advance to pre-clinical drug candidates for multiple diseases, e.g. TB and cancer. Iktos’s AI technology, based on deep generative models, helps to bring new insights and directions into the drug discovery process based on a comprehensive data-driven chemical structure generation technology. This technology automatically designs virtual novel molecules with all of the characteristics of a successful drug molecule. This approach, validated through Iktos’s other collaborations, is a novel solution to one of the key challenges in drug design: rapid identification of molecules that simultaneously satisfy multiple parameters, such as potency, selectivity, safety, and project-specific properties. This approach uniquely enables the exploration of chemical space and produces innovative molecule designs with greater freedom to operate. Iktos has recently diversified its R&D efforts into the development of an AI technology for retrosynthesis. Identifying and selecting synthetic pathways is one of the most challenging and time-consuming tasks in synthetic and medicinal chemistry. Iktos has developed AI based retrosynthesis analysis and planning tool Spaya™ by harnessing the power of data-driven retrosynthesis algorithm for systematic exploration and prioritisation of synthetic routes for a desired compound in minutes. “We are thrilled to be working with Iktos to drive our projects towards drug candidates. Iktos AI platform combined with our own in-house computational and medicinal chemistry design teams provide a powerful combination for innovative new drug design.” Professor Paul Wyatt, Head of the DDU “We are thrilled and proud to join forces with DDU with the aim to help in the discovery of therapeutics for neglected diseases and the translation of novel biology through small molecule drug discovery,” commented Yann Gaston-Mathé, President and CEO of Iktos. “Pleased to have earned DDU’s trust, we are confident that together with DDU and their established R&D partners, we will be able to identify promising novel chemical matter and solve complex multiparametric optimisation problems. The feedback from DDU’s research team will be highly valuable as we improve our product offerings. Our strategy has always been to tackle challenging problems alongside our collaborators where we can demonstrate value generation for new and on-going drug discovery projects.” About DDU The Drug Discovery Unit (DDU) (est. 2006) within the School of Life Sciences at The University of Dundee is a fully integrated, Biotech-style, drug discovery centre working across multiple disease areas. The DDU collaborates with partners to translate world-class biology research into novel drug targets and candidate drugs to address unmet medical need. About Iktos Incorporated in October 2016, Iktos is a French start-up company specialized in the development of artificial intelligence solutions applied to chemical research, more specifically medicinal chemistry and new drug design. Iktos is developing a proprietary and innovative solution based on deep learning generative models, which enables, using existing data, to design molecules that are optimized in silico to meet all the success criteria of a small molecule discovery project. The use of Iktos technology enables major productivity gains in upstream pharmaceutical R&D. Iktos offers its technology both as professional services and as a SaaS software platform, Makya™. Iktos is also developing Spaya™, a synthesis planning software based upon Iktos’s proprietary AI technology for retrosynthesis.

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PHARMACY MARKET

Nobel Biocare Receives FDA 510(k) Clearance for the Nobel Biocare N1™ Implant System

Envista Holdings Corporation | December 28, 2021

Envista Holdings Corporation announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has cleared the Nobel Biocare N1™ implant system. Boasting a biologically driven design of components and forward-thinking treatment protocols, the N1™ implant system represents a significant step forward in patient-centric implant solutions. More than an implant, N1 is a comprehensive system of dedicated instruments, prosthetic components, and surgical protocols. New features of the system include an implant designed for immediate placement and predictable insertion torques, a trioval conical connection for the abutment to slide into place, and an emergence profile designed for soft tissue maintenance. Innovative site preparation for greater patient comfort The Nobel Biocare N1™ system includes the novel feature of the OsseoShaper™, an instrument that redefines site preparation and is set to reshape implantology with optimized workflows, greater patient comfort and faster treatment times. By gently 'shaping' the osteotomy at low speed and without irrigation, the OsseoShaper™ reduces noise and vibration compared to conventional drilling protocols. This leads to improved patient comfort and has been shown in pre-clinical studies to preserve vital bone. Embracing surface chemistry and digital workflows Fully embracing the new Mucointegration™ concept, the Nobel Biocare N1™ features the Xeal™ and TiUltra™ surface treatments. With their specially tailored surface chemistry and topography, TiUltra implants and Xeal abutments can benefit from this design to optimize tissue integration at every level. Nobel Biocare N1™ will be further integrated into the digital workflow with the DTX Studio™ suite, giving dental professionals more opportunities to provide patients with shorter time to teeth. "For over 50 years, Nobel Biocare has been a pioneering force behind implantology. The demand for high quality patient-centric solutions is higher than ever, and the Nobel Biocare N1™ system enables clinicians to set a new standard in personalizing, digitizing, and democratizing the implant treatment experience they can offer patients." Amir Aghdaei, Chief Executive Officer, Envista Patrik Eriksson, President Nobel Biocare, explained, "Drilling protocols have hardly changed over the past 50 years. However, the OsseoShaper™ provides a completely new approach designed for patient comfort, streamlined workflow, and improved predictability; while at the same time, respects biology to achieve fast osseointegration. We are excited to partner with clinicians to bring the N1 system to US-based patients." About Nobel Biocare Nobel Biocare is a world leader in the field of innovative implant-based dental restorations. The company's portfolio offers solutions from single tooth to fully edentulous indications with dental implant systems (including key brands NobelActive® and NobelParallel™ and ceramic implant NobelPearl™*) a comprehensive range of high-precision individualized prosthetics and CAD/CAM systems (NobelProcera®), digital solutions for treatment planning and guided surgery (NobelClinician® and DTX Studio™ suite) as well as biomaterials. Nobel Biocare supports its customers through all phases of professional development, offering world-class training and education along with practice support and patient information materials. The company is headquartered in Zurich, Switzerland. Production takes place at five sites located in the United States, Sweden, and Germany. Products and services are available in over 80 countries through subsidiaries and distributors. *Distributed by Nobel Biocare. Manufactured by Dentalpoint AG About Envista Envista is a global family of more than 30 trusted dental brands, including KaVo, Kerr, Nobel Biocare, and Ormco, united by a shared purpose: to partner with professionals to improve lives. Envista helps its customers deliver the best possible patient care through industry-leading dental consumables, solutions, technology, and services. Our comprehensive portfolio, including dental implants and treatment options, orthodontics, and digital imaging technologies, covers an estimated 90% of dentists' clinical needs for diagnosing, treating, and preventing dental conditions as well as improving the aesthetics of the human smile. With a foundation comprised of the proven Envista Business System (EBS) methodology, an experienced leadership team, and a strong culture grounded in continuous improvement, commitment to innovation, and deep customer focus, Envista is well equipped to meet the end-to-end needs of dental professionals worldwide. Envista is one of the largest global dental products companies, with significant market positions in some of the most attractive segments of the dental products industry.

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BUSINESS INSIGHTS

Stallergenes Greer Strengthens Precision Medicine Approach in Allergen Immunotherapy With Imperial College London Research Collaboration

Stallergenes Greer | January 17, 2022

Stallergenes Greer, a global healthcare company specialising in allergen immunotherapy (AIT), today announced that the company has entered into a research collaboration on the discovery of biomarkers of AIT efficacy with Imperial College London, a global top ten university with a world-class reputation in science, engineering, business and medicine. This long-term research collaboration, which combines the long-standing expertise of Stallergenes Greer in AIT with the prestigious research capabilities of Imperial College London, aims to push the boundaries of allergic patient care by identifying biomarkers of AIT efficacy and expanding the knowledge of the pathophysiology of allergic diseases and their treatment with AIT. “We are thrilled about this collaboration with Imperial College London which will contribute to both deciphering the mode of action of AIT and identifying key markers that can be used in the routine practice of allergology for the benefit of patients and healthcare practitioners. Based on the understanding of specific phenotypes and the responses of patients with allergies, allergologists will be able to tailor treatment modalities with the right dosing at the right time for each individual. This underscores our commitment to advancing precision medicine for allergy sufferers”, Amer Jaber, Executive VP Operations Europe and International and President of Stallergenes SAS “This research collaboration is a remarkable opportunity for a fruitful partnership between Imperial College London, a pioneer and world-leading university in the biomarker field, and Stallergenes Greer. It will build on the recent advances of biomarker research to further develop precision medicine in AIT for the benefit of patients with allergic diseases,” said Dr Mohamed Shamji, Head of the Immunomodulation and Tolerance Group, Imperial College London. The results of this research collaboration will be shared in international congresses and peer review publications. About Allergen Immunotherapy Allergies are the most prevalent and fastest growing chronic diseases in the industrialised world, affecting over one billion people worldwide. Allergen immunotherapy uniquely alters the natural course of respiratory allergies. It is the only therapeutic class capable of modifying disease progression and potentially preventing the onset of the disease by inducing tolerance in the immune system. About Stallergenes Greer Headquartered in London (UK), Stallergenes Greer Ltd is a global healthcare company specialising in the diagnosis and treatment of allergies through the development and commercialisation of allergen immunotherapy products and services. Stallergenes Greer Ltd is the parent company of Greer Laboratories, Inc. About Imperial College London Imperial College London is one of the world's leading universities. The College's 20,000 students and 8,000 staff are working to solve the biggest challenges in science, medicine, engineering, and business. Imperial is University of the Year 2022 in the Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide. It is the world’s fifth most international university, according to Times Higher Education, with academic ties to more than 150 countries. Reuters named the College as the UK's most innovative university because of its exceptional entrepreneurial culture and ties to industry.

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BUSINESS INSIGHTS

Arrowhead Initiates Project to Build New Manufacturing and Lab Facilities

Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals | December 21, 2021

Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals, Inc. announced that it has completed a transaction to purchase 13 acres of land in the Verona Technology Park in Verona, WI, which is planned to be the site of an approximately 140,000 square foot drug manufacturing facility and an approximately 115,000 square foot laboratory and office facility to support process development and analytical activities. Arrowhead intends to invest between $200 million and $250 million into the buildout of the facilities. The Company expects that the new facilities will result in the creation of approximately 250 new jobs in the local area. Construction is scheduled to begin in the first quarter of 2022. Arrowhead will continue to operate additional research and development facilities in Madison, WI, and San Diego, CA. “For more than a decade, Arrowhead has been a dedicated member of the biotech community in the greater Madison, Wisconsin, area. We have built strong local relationships and are pleased to continue our growth with the new Arrowhead campus that will include a new GMP manufacturing facility and associated lab and office facility. This investment reaffirms our commitment to the Wisconsin biotech ecosystem, and we would like to thank the local agencies, who have been a pleasure to work with. Arrowhead’s pipeline of what we believe are industry leading investigational RNAi medicines continues to expand rapidly. The new Arrowhead campus will allow us to support our growing pipeline and positions us well to advance the manufacturing process, including at commercial scale, of our TRiM™-enabled drug candidates. We view this as a strong competitive advantage as we approach potential commercialization of our rapidly progressing clinical candidates.” Christopher Anzalone, Ph.D., Arrowhead’s president and CEO Major project team members include Eppstein Uhen Architects, DPS Group, D’Onofrio Kottke & Associates, Smocke & Associates, Cresa Madison, and Vogel Brothers Building Company. John Chapman, Vice President and Design Principal at EUA, said, “We are privileged to be collaborating again with Arrowhead on an inventive building design which will enable their employees to treat some of the most challenging diseases.” Completion of the lab and office space is anticipated in the first quarter of 2023 and completion of the manufacturing facility is expected in the fourth quarter of 2023. About Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals develops medicines that treat intractable diseases by silencing the genes that cause them. Using a broad portfolio of RNA chemistries and efficient modes of delivery, Arrowhead therapies trigger the RNA interference mechanism to induce rapid, deep, and durable knockdown of target genes. RNA interference, or RNAi, is a mechanism present in living cells that inhibits the expression of a specific gene, thereby affecting the production of a specific protein. Arrowhead’s RNAi-based therapeutics leverage this natural pathway of gene silencing.

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Spotlight

This paper, authored by Alireza Shabani, Founder & CEO of Qulab, describes the necessary computational architecture for pharmaceutical firms to accelerate R&D and drug discovery, especially utilizing special purpose silicon and quantum processors.

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