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HitGen and Cambridge Molecular announce a strategic partnership, bringing together DNA-Encoded Libraries and Deep Learning Release Time:2021-11-05

Chengdu, China, and Cambridge, United Kingdom, 5 November 2021 – HitGen Inc. (688222.SH) and Cambridge Molecular are pleased to announce an exclusive alliance, introducing DeepDELve 2 – Cambridge Molecular’s highly optimised DEL-specific deep learning system – as an addition to HitGen’s world-leading DEL discovery platform, with over 1 trillion drug-like small molecules.


DeepDELve 2 is a robust and highly specialised deep learning pipeline that provides a pathway to readily available potential ligands for drug targets. It leverages all the useful information delivered by a DEL selection set to extract high-level patterns, and identifies readily available predicted ligands from within commercially available or internal compound collections. It has undergone constant use and iteration for the past year with external partners, and is, to our knowledge, the most advanced such system currently deployed.


DeepDELve 2 is fully integrated with Enamine REAL space, Mcule, Chemspace, and eleven other compound catalogue providers, and can be linked on demand to commercial or internal catalogues of choice. As such, potential ligands are often delivered to a partner’s lab in as little as a few days. The system can be run both on maximum confidence and maximum diversity settings, and is capable of analysing a variety of selection set-ups, including selectivity screens and other multi-condition screens. It has been road-tested on a wide range of screening outcomes with compelling results, and can be trained in a privacy-preserving manner that does not require partners to share molecular structures from their selections.


“By combining the scale and success of HitGen’s DEL technology with Cambridge Molecular’s powerful machine learning capabilities, we are witnessing the emergence of a highly effective approach to accessing expanded chemical space for drug discovery via available chemical providers or even virtual enumerated chemical designs. We look forward to further accelerating and empowering our partners in discovering and developing innovative medicines,” said Dr Jin Li, Chairman and CEO of HitGen Inc. 


“We are pleased to take part in a paradigm shift in the DEL space with a partner as forward-thinking, determined and effective as HitGen. A new capability with such an impact on the number and diversity of confirmed leads, and on the speed of lead acquisition, has the potential to transform the industry, enabling HitGen partners to access novel chemical space reliably and quickly, allowing faster iterations, and yielding more backup series. This is a once-in-a-generation opportunity,” said Dmitry Foxham, CEO of Cambridge Molecular.




About HitGen

HitGen Inc. (688222.SH) is a publicly listed biotech company headquartered in Chengdu, China, with subsidiaries in Cambridge, UK and Houston, USA. HitGen has established a drug discovery research platform for small molecules and nucleic acid drugs centered on the design, synthesis and screening of DNA encoded chemical libraries (DELs), fragment-based drug discovery (FBDD) and structure-based drug design (SBDD) technologies. HitGen's DELs currently contain more than 1 trillion novel, diverse, drug-like small molecules and macrocyclic compounds. These compounds are members of DELs synthesized from many thousands of distinct chemical scaffolds, designed with tractable chemistry, and have yielded proven results for the discovery of small molecule leads against established as well as unprecedented classes of biological targets.

Through its acquisition of Vernalis Research in Cambridge, UK, a leader in FBDD/SBDD, HitGen now has a research team of over 500 scientists and offers a full set of capabilities from recombinant protein expression and purification, structural biology, assay development, screening, DEL synthesis, nucleic acid and small molecule chemical synthesis, computational and medicinal chemistry, biochemistry and biophysics, cell biology, in vivo pharmacology, DMPK, CMC,  to enable drug discovery research from target gene to IND filing.


About Cambridge Molecular

Cambridge Molecular is a leading provider of machine learning and data science services for DNA-Encoded Libraries, based in Cambridge, England. Since its inception, the company has been devoted entirely to the development of machine learning and data science tools for DEL applications. The company’s specialised tools enable the delivery of extraordinarily high numbers of diverse confirmed leads, at unprecedented speeds, with the earliest arriving within days of a screen being completed. Cambridge Molecular has worked on a great variety of DEL screens with industry-leading partners, enabled by deep learning systems specific to challenging datasets including low-data screens, selectivity screens, and excessively noisy screens, as well as a suite of tools devoted to DEL-expedited lead optimisation.

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