People’s Champion finalist 2018: GTN

Thanks to a combination of quantum physics and machine learning, we no longer need to wait for humans to discover the next wonder drug - so is GTN your People's Champion?

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Start-up name: GTN
Founders: Noor Shaker, Vid Stojevic
Started in: 2017
Based in: London
Business description: Start-up which has built pioneering drug discovery technology

Shortlisted category:

Innovative Business of the Year

The GTN story

Just eighteen months ago, Professor Noor Shaker and Dr Vid Stojevic set out to turbocharge the process by which new and potentially life-saving drugs make it to the market.

At present, it takes 15 long years and a staggering £2.9bn to put a drug through the various rounds of development and testing before a new medication actually reaches the patients who need it, wasting huge amounts of time and money along the way.

Through the effective application of machine learning and quantum physics, the pair believe that we can cut both those figures in half.

GTN is the brainchild of two mighty intellects: machine learning specialist Shaker and quantum physicist Vid Stojevic. Together they have created unique patent-pending technology, Generative Tensorial Networks, to effectively access the full drug ecosystem.

Their models have the astounding ability to “generate innovative chemical compounds and then predict which of these are most likely to make successful drugs, taking into account the quantum entanglement properties which dictate drug effectiveness.”

After meeting at the accelerator Entrepreneur First, Shaker and Stojevic secured £2.1m from a group of venture capitalists including Octopus Ventures.

They’ve since expanded their team to 11 people, including ten PhDs. The fledgling deep-tech start-up is motivated not only by advancing technology and the associated business opportunities, but by the social impact of identifying those medicines that have a potentially life-saving impact.

CEO Shaker is also incredibly inspirational herself; as a hijab-wearing Middle Eastern Muslim woman, she credits her “outsider status’ with giving her a fierce drive to succeed. “My default was that I should always fight for what I want,” she says.

GTN’s ultimate aim is to apply cutting-edge AI technology to the health-tech sector in a way that allows machine learning to “propose compounds that the chemist wouldn’t have thought of,” and in doing so eventually save people’s lives.

Why GTN made our shortlist:

The story of GTN’s two founders – a machine learning expert and a quantum physicist – perfectly reflects the company itself. They’re all about joining forces across disciplines to build computer models capable of discovering new drugs exponentially faster than humans could.

Going beyond the realm of what humans are able to achieve alone, harnessing the power of AI and quantum physics to build life-saving technology is the very definition of innovation.

Where to find out more about GTN:

Twitter: @GTN_LTD

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