French start-up Iktos has raised a €15.5 million Series A round fuelling its launch of its drug discovery platform.
Iktos have developed a way to speed up drug discovery by using AI technology. Iktos says that currently, the early stages of drug development, from identification of therapeutic target to first clinical entry, takes on average five years, requiring an investment of $100 million per drug candidate. Iktos believes that using AI for drug discovery and probability can reduce this laborious costly task.
Funds will be used to launch Iktos Robotics, an end-to-end, drug discovery platform allowing it to offer fully integrated drug discovery services to the pharmaceutical industry.
“The search for new drug matter is still a laborious and uncertain quest of exploring a chemical universe composed of virtually infinite number of potential molecules. The application of artificial intelligence to early drug discovery and design offers the possibility of a radical change for researchers exploring such chemical universe.,” says Yann Gaston-Mathé, President and co-founder of Iktos.
“The technologies we have developed have been enabling multiple partners in realising this promise. We welcome our new, experienced, investor syndicate and fresh financing that will allow us to execute our plan of being the preferred partner for the industry to address their drug development needs," he says.
To date Iktos has had collaborations with multiple pharmaceutical and biotech companies such as Janssen, Merck, Pfizer, Servier, Ono and Teijin.
“Shortening drug discovery cycle times and accelerating processes to clinical entry at lower cost has been a high priority for the industry and clinicians alike. We believe Iktos with its mature technology across generative AI and synthesis planning, and advancements in building fully integrated drug discovery platform has the potential to provide a competitive edge for the pharma industry as AI/ML becomes a core feature of R&D,” said Dr Nadiya Ishnazarova, Investment Associate at M Ventures.