Exscientia CEO Andrew Hopkins and Sanofi CEO Paul Hudson

Sanofi, Ex­sci­en­tia ink the next AI megadeal, sign­ing terms on a $100M up­front pact with up to 15 drugs on the line

Drug R&D has for years had an abysmal track record of suc­cess, with the vast ma­jor­i­ty of drug can­di­dates nev­er mak­ing it to mar­ket. The promise of AI to short­en the dis­cov­ery time for new drugs and up their chances of suc­cess has more big drug­mak­ers buy­ing in — and Sanofi is the lat­est.

Sanofi will pay $100 mil­lion up­front with a po­ten­tial $5.2 bil­lion in down­stream mile­stones for ac­cess to up to 15 small mol­e­cule drugs from Ex­sci­en­tia, a red-hot UK deep learn­ing com­pa­ny at the fore­front of the so-called “AI-dis­cov­ered” drug R&D move­ment, the part­ners said Fri­day.

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