Y Combinator accelerator will prioritize biotech startups using AI for drug discovery

Andrea Park - Print  | 

Y Combinator, the high-profile startup accelerator based in Mountain View, Calif., announced in a blog post that it will prioritize applicants that are using Atomwise's artificial intelligence software for drug discovery.

Atomwise, a YC alum, uses machine learning to suggest drug compounds that could be used to treat small molecules singled out by researchers as possible drug targets. Without Atomwise, researchers have to conduct extensive research to confirm a molecule's potential as a target before raising funds to find a compound to treat the molecule.

Researchers in academia can earn free access to Atomwise's service through the Artificial Intelligence Molecular Screen (AIMS) Awards program. Through YC's new initiative, AIMS participants will have an expedited route to applying for a spot in the accelerator, along with help from YC itself throughout the application process.

Once accepted into the program, drug development startups will receive investments, help with incorporating and guidance through the commercialization process from YC, plus continued no-cost access to Atomwise's algorithms.

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