BMS forges multi-year research partnership with PathAI

By Jenni Spinner

- Last updated on GMT

(FlashMovie/iStock via Getty Images Plus)
(FlashMovie/iStock via Getty Images Plus)

Related tags Bms Bristol Myers Squibb Cancer Oncology Artificial intelligence Drug discovery

The pharmaceutical company and the artificial intelligence pathology specialist will focus on translational research in oncology, fibrosis, and immunology.

PathAI, a company that centers on artificial intelligence (AI) powered pathology, has announced a multi-year, expanded collaborative agreement with pharmaceutical company Bristol Myers Squibb (BMS). According to the collaborators, the work initially will focus on translational research in the areas of oncology, fibrosis, and immunology; the overall goal reportedly is to continue transitioning the work into clinical trials.

Robert Plenge, Bristol Myers Squibb

We look forward to collaborating with PathAI to expand the potential application of AI in the drug development process to include translational research, clinical trials, and diagnostic advancements​,” said Robert Plenge, BMS senior vice president and head of immunology, cardiovascular and the Fibrosis Thematic Research Center (also head of translational medicine. “We feel that PathAI will be a productive collaborator given digital pathology represents a growing area for BMS, PathAI is a leader in the field, and the fact that we have a long-standing productive relationship with the company​.”  

The two companies reportedly will use AI pathology models with the potential to de-risk therapeutic development across the BMS pipeline by better identifying patient populations. BMS and PathAI also plan to leverage the models to obtain key insights that help enhance patient segmentation in clinical trials across multiple disease indications.

The companies also report they are collaborating on developing AI-powered diagnostics, including measuring CD8 T-cell infiltration across oncology disease areas. The biomarker reportedly has demonstrated the potential to predict response to immunotherapy and possibly inform patient treatment decisions.  

The announcement is an extension of the existing relationship between the companies, which began in 2016 and has said to have shown results in multiple areas:

  • In June 2020, the companies presented retrospective exploratory findings from completed clinical trials on AI-powered PD-L1 scoring, which identified more patients as PD-L1 positive compared to manual-based PD-L1 scoring.
  • In November 2021, the companies jointly presented results from PathAI’s CD8 algorithm at The Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer (SITC) Annual Meeting.
  • In July 2022, the two companies jointly published new exploratory data in the Journal of Modern Pathology, comparing the use of AI-powered algorithms to manual IHC scoring PD-L1 expression in relation to outcomes across multiple cancer types from several clinical trials.

Given the insights generated from past collaborations, we have entered into a long-term collaboration with Bristol Myers Squibb to expand our use of machine learning models​,” said Andy Beck, co-founder and CEO of PathAI. “We will build on our work using AI-based pathology in translational research and validate the use of this technology through clinical trials and diagnostic development; our ultimate goal is to improve patient care through AI.​”

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