Sanofi bets big on AI drug discovery with Atomwise pact

Aug. 17, 2022

Sanofi and Atomwise have established an exclusive research collaboration that will leverage San Fran-based Atomwise's proprietary AI-powered platform for the discovery of up to five drug targets.

The agreement includes upfront payment of $20 million from Sanofi, with the potential for $1 billion in milestone-based payments plus tiered royalties.

Atomwise's AtomNet platform incorporates deep learning for structure-based drug design, enabling the rapid, AI-powered search of the company's proprietary library of more than 3 trillion synthesizable compounds. This approach, according to Atomwise, shifts the mode of drug discovery away from serendipitous discovery and toward search based on structure, making the drug discovery process more rational, effective and efficient.

This isn't the first big AI deal for Sanofi this year. Back in Jan., the drugmaker inked a potential $5.2 billion deal to leverage Exscientia’s AI-based capabilities to develop up to 15 novel small molecule candidates across oncology and immunology.