The advent of the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic has highlighted yet again the need (and opportunity) for the use of modern machine learning to accelerate the drug discovery process. Many in the machine learning community have been inspired by recent events. Yet all too often, advances in machine learning theory and practice have failed to translate into genuinely useful applications in drug discovery. There are many reasons for this, including poor alignment between the communities. This panel brings together distinguished ML researchers who have made genuine advances in AI for health, biology and drug discovery. The discussion will be structured, walking through the drug discovery process: from identifying targets and the problems posed by high dimensionality in genomics data, through the challenges of molecular discovery, to clinical trial design and analysis. The panel will discuss successes, promising research directions and outstanding challenges. The aim of the panel is to catalyze a more nuanced conversation between the drug discovery and machine learning communities and to highlight new opportunities for collaboration. Panel members will be available immediately after both events on RocketChat to answer questions.
Panel: Prof. Mihaela Van Der Schaar (Cambridge), Dr James Zou (Stanford University), Dr Andreas Bender (AstraZeneca). Chaired by: Dr Lindsay Edwards (AstraZeneca)