AstraZeneca has incorporated a new target for heart failure treatment into its discovery portfolio through its ongoing collaboration with BenevolentAI.

This is the first target selected from the extended partnership between the companies.

The target was discovered by leveraging the AI-driven drug discovery platform of BenevolentAI and subsequently validated by AstraZeneca.

The strategic partnership between BenevolentAI and AstraZeneca began in 2019, initially focusing on identifying new treatments for idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis and chronic kidney disease.

In January 2022, the deal was expanded to include heart failure and systemic lupus erythematosus, highlighting the versatility of the Benevolent Platform across a range of therapeutic areas.

The collaboration brings together the expertise of both companies, merging BenevolentAI’s platform and knowledge in biomedicine with AstraZeneca’s scientific and disease-specific capabilities.

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This innovative approach to target identification combines the strengths of both organisations, leading to new discoveries.

Financial terms of both the initial and extended collaborations include upfront payments upon signing, research funding, potential discovery, development and commercial milestones.

BenevolentAI will receive tiered royalty payments on net sales of any products emerging out of the partnership upon their commercialisation.

AstraZeneca research and early development, cardiovascular, renal and metabolism head and senior vice-president Regina Fritsche Danielson stated: “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.”