AI collaboration shows success for novel heart failure target  

Human heart

AstraZeneca has added a novel target for heart failure to its discovery portfolio through its collaboration with BenevolentAI. 

This novel target for heart failure was discovered using BenevolentAI’s AI-drug discovery platform and experimentally validated by AstraZeneca. This is the first target to be selected from the extended collaboration with AstraZeneca, highlighting continued positive progress in the field of target identification. 

BenevolentAI’s strategic collaboration with AstraZeneca began in 2019, and originally focused on discovering potential new treatments for idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) and chronic kidney disease (CKD). The collaboration was expanded in January 2022 to two new disease areas, heart failure and systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). 

Heart failure is often complicated by multiple interrelated diseases, so requires a deep understanding of the potential disease drivers in individual patients. Current heart failure treatments follow a “one-size-fits-all” approach. However, due to the wide range of mechanisms by which heart failure can occur, there remains an unmet need for new therapies as up to 50% of patients die within five years of diagnosis. 

Dr Anne Phelan, Chief Scientific Officer of BenevolentAI, said: “I am delighted that AstraZeneca has selected one of the novel heart failure targets that we have been jointly working on to enter its portfolio. Heart failure is a therapeutic area where there is significant medical need but, due to the size of the market, requires a team effort and significant momentum, so we are delighted to be working with AstraZeneca in this important field of medicine.” 

Regina Fritsche Danielson, SVP and Head of Research and Early Development, Cardiovascular, Renal and Metabolism, at AstraZeneca said: “Our ongoing collaboration with BenevolentAI has been instrumental in uncovering new insights into complex diseases such as CKD and heart failure. This shared expertise, combined with the power of AI, has the potential to identify the right therapeutic targets for patients with heart failure and help deliver the next generation of innovative therapies.” 

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