IRB Barcelona collaborates with Amazon in the development of a computational tool to speed up the search for drugs against COVID-19

6 Apr, 2020

There are currently more than 10,000 scientific articles related to coronavirus infections. In fact, in recent weeks, research to combat COVID-19 has accelerated, and more than 4,000 new academic papers have been published on potential vaccines, therapies, and treatments. Processing this volume of information manually would be unmanageable to be able to advance this urgently needed research fast enough. IRB Barcelona’s Structural Bioinformatics and Network Biology Laboratory, led by ICREA researcher Patrick Aloy, has joined forces with Amazon to develop a computational tool that would speed up the process. Using artificial intelligence, this tool will "read" all these articles and extract all relevant information related to the molecules and treatments studied.

Speedy collaboration for drug discovery

The Chemical Checker is a computational tool that offers information on 1 million molecules with pharmacological potential. "The Chemical Checker aims to process and encode complex data on the effects that different chemical compounds have on living organisms, so that they can be incorporated into new artificial intelligence technologies," says Miquel Duran, researcher of the IRB Barcelona group and first author of the study.