Researchers at the University of Toronto are using artificial intelligence to help find a cure for Ebola. Using Canada’s largest supercomputer, researchers can analyze all existing and hypothetical treatments for a disease in order to compile data in a matter of days, instead of years. While unfortunately this process doesn’t altogether eliminate use of animal testing (which is required by law), at least it demonstrates meaningful progress in the ‘reduce’ goal of the 3Rs.
As explained in the article, “The testing of pharmaceuticals is normally a physical science – “we still have to build every prototype we test,” said Heifets, resulting in hundreds of thousands of failed experiments for each success. Chematria can do that research virtually, making it 150 times faster than conventional methods, said Heifets. The tech has been applied to malaria, leukemia and Multiple Sclerosis, but in the face of a growing pandemic, creators last week launched an Ebola project.
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