Pharma R&D Today

Ideas and Insight supporting all stages of Drug Discovery & Development

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How publishing can help address diversity in STEM

Posted on March 30th, 2022 by

Pharma R&D

The issue of diversity in science, technology, engineering and mathematics is not a new topic, but it is one that needs to be continually addressed as these sectors endeavor to be more inclusive. And it is possible that publishing, an area that itself has work to do in diversity, could provide some metrics to help confront the diversity deficit.

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Umesh Nandal: Chemist and data scientist in one

Posted on March 10th, 2022 by

AI & Data

Umesh Nandal is a Director of Data Science at Elsevier. As an AI expert with a Master’s in Chemistry, he embodies what Elsevier brings to the table – an actionable fusion of data and domain expertise. “Cross-functional teams combining data science, tech and domain knowledge is the only way we can achieve our collective goal: curing disease,” says Umesh.

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Can predictive retrosynthesis become a valuable part of a chemist’s toolkit?

Posted on January 18th, 2022 by

Chemistry

“Yes. I was amazed by the Reaxys Predictive Retrosynthesis technology,” says Moritz Classen of the Carreira Research Group at ETH Zurich. He and his colleagues spent months evaluating the tool as they applied it into their daily workflows. “It’s already very user-friendly and really does save a lot of time”. So, what can chemists exactly expect when using predictive retrosynthesis tools?

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The power of similarities to accelerate antiviral development for COVID-19

Posted on January 11th, 2022 by

COVID-19

In April 2020, I wrote a blog post entitled “Exploiting similarities between SARS-CoV-2 and other viruses to accelerate vaccine and therapy development,” where I described research areas leveraging genetic and phenotypic similarities between SARS-CoV-2 and other known viruses. In my quest to find relevant data, I used Reaxys Medicinal Chemistry to generate a list of substances that interact with enterovirus 3C proteases, a target showing striking similarities with the main proteases of SARS-CoV and SARS-CoV-2. A set of interesting derivatives using a cyanohydrin as an anchor group caught my attention.1 Interestingly, Pfizer used the cyano warhead a few months later to design their protease inhibitor (PF-07321332). Pfizer’s antiviral forms a complex structure with SARS-CoV-2 Mpro, demonstrating the efficacy of the cyano warhead to form a covalent bond with the cysteine residue at the active site.2

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AI-driven innovation in life sciences: Unlocking the page – 20+ years of digital innovation at Elsevier

Posted on December 2nd, 2021 by

AI & Data

Mark Sheehan is VP Data Science on Elsevier’s Life Science team. His 22 years at the company maps closely with Elsevier’s digital journey over that time. And today, pharmaceutical companies can follow a similar journey – albeit highly accelerated – using Elsevier’s latest AI-driven R&D boosters. Mark has enjoyed many valuable experiences along the way, from the joys of cracking open a newly printed book, to enabling people to speedily crack new synthetic pathways at scale. “Yes, innovation always involves new technology. But it’s equally about human collaboration,” he says.

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AI-driven innovation in life sciences: Data as data should be

Posted on November 17th, 2021 by

AI & Data

Your AI applications are only as strong as your data. This is why Elsevier strives to make data not only align with FAIR usability principles but also be maximized for trustworthiness and relevance. In this way we can confidently offer the full potential of data science in an easy-to-use manner – from data acquisition and preparation, to AI application and interpretation.

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About this Blog

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The Elsevier Pharma R&D blog provides insight and opinion on topics related to pharmaceutical research and development, namely: big data, target identification, new drug discovery, drug safety monitoring, risk mitigation and regulatory compliance. We serve the community of chemists, scientists, drug safety specialists, educators and students interested in pharmaceutical R&D.

Editor’s note: The views and opinions expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Elsevier,  its affiliates and sponsors or its parent company, Reed Elsevier.