According to recent research in European Journal of Human Genetics, there are more than 6.000 rare diseases affecting more than 300 million people world-wide. Today, only 450 FDA-approved orphan drug products are available, which leaves hundreds of millions suffering from chronic diseases and at risk of early death.
Nucleic acid-based medicine (NABM), also known as RNA therapeutics, is a rapidly developing field that has the potential for transforming healthcare as we know it. Innovations in NABM are making treatments available to people with previously untreatable rare diseases, such as rare neurological disorders.
Abzu and Contera Pharma will apply their many years of expertise within neuroscience and drug discovery, supercomputing, and artificial intelligence to design nucleic acid-based therapeutics. The two companies aim to have a rapid target screening application available this year, enabling Contera Pharma to advance better nucleic acid-based therapeutics towards clinic development.
“We are combining two of the most promising advances in healthcare technology: RNA therapeutics and explainable AI. We believe we have a unique technology that can help pharma companies get a deeper understanding of how biology works and significantly improve early stage candidate selection,” said Martin K. Mathiasen, Product + Customer Lead at Abzu. “Together with Contera Pharma, we can propel innovation in these fields, and as a deep tech company, we can be an instrumental part of pushing the boundaries of how diseases are treated”
“Abzu’s explainable artificial intelligence technology and in-house RNA and data science capabilities, combined with their service-based business model, is a key stepping stone for Contera Pharma when executing our R&D strategy to develop novel and innovative therapeutics for patients in medical need,” said Kenneth Vielsted Christensen, Chief Scientific Officer at Contera Pharma. “Together, we are building a unique AI based technology platform to improve and accelerate preclinical development of RNA therapeutics.”
The QLattice introduces a new standard of interpretability and explainability to life science data sets. Through simple models and straightforward mathematical expressions, Abzu’s QLattice achieves a level of transparency and performance in machine learning that is disrupting domains previously dominated by opaque and cumbersome models.
Founded in January 2018, Abzu is a deep tech startup with offices in Copenhagen, Denmark and Barcelona, Spain. Abzu derives its name from Ancient Sumerian, meaning “the source of the waters of wisdom”.
Abzu has raised a total of €8,1M, and last closed a seed round in April 2021 for €4.9M.
About Contera Pharma
Contera Pharma is focused on developing new treatments for people suffering from neurological disorders. Contera Pharma’s science is based on a precision medicine approach integrating external and internal data sources to support rational selection of human disease-validated drug discovery targets to identify novel pipeline opportunities within neurological disorders. The company’s lead asset, JM-010, is currently in Phase IIb clinical testing for Parkinson’s disease dyskinesia.
Contera Pharma was founded in 2010 and has offices in Hørsholm, Denmark and Seoul, South-Korea.