Making AI available to companies, large and small

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania home of Vertex Labs

Vertex Labs specialises in the custom development and implementation of Machine Learning, Deep Learning, and Automation solutions. Co-founder and CEO Tom Bell explains why Vertex Laboratories is a founding member of SaferWorldbyDesign

Why is Vertex Laboratories part of SaferWorldbyDesign?

Our company’s mission is to push the boundaries of research in math and science in order to solve interesting and impactful problems. While we already create Artificial Intelligence (AI) solutions in a number of spaces, very few of them allow us to impact lives in a positive manner. I think being part of SaferWorldbyDesign will allow us to do that.

What does Vertex Laboratories bring to SaferWorldbyDesign?

Tom Bell, CEO of Vertex LaboratoriesWe specialise in AI, Machine Learning and Deep Learning - all very data-centric. What we bring to the SaferWorldbyDesign table are creative modelling techniques that, traditionally, aren’t seen much in the pharma/biotech space - or in many other spaces, for that matter. By being able to add these different models and techniques, by working with new data to build models that can learn and continue to push for higher accuracy - whether that be in predictive modelling or risk assessment - I think we add a lot of complimentary services to SaferWorldbyDesign. Working in SaferWorldbyDesign to build custom models and integrate them with the EdelweissData platform looks especially promising. Once we’ve reached economies of scale, SaferWorldbyDesign can tailor to smaller budgets so that all companies can have access to this technology. 

Companies “outsource” their AI needs to Vertex Laboratories. Why not just set up a team in-house? 

There is a finite amount of talent in Machine Learning and Deep Learning right now and putting together a team costs a lot of time and money. Many companies aren’t able to put it into their business model so that’s something we offer. It’s not fair that companies like Google and Amazon monopolise AI. Besides, they’re using it to sell ads, not save lives.

What changes could AI bring to pharma/biotech?

It can certainly push for higher accuracy – that’s one area where we have seen a lot of success - but it will also allow scientists to work with smaller amounts of data and squeeze the most value out of it. When it costs hundreds of thousands of dollars to get more data, it’s important to be able to squeeze the most value out of small datasets. That way, you know up front whether adding “X” amount of new data will result in “X” higher level of accuracy or not.

So, by using AI, a company could decide whether it’s worth it to invest in more data?

Exactly. Instead of spending, $500,000 on new data, for example, they might spend $100,000 to know within a certain confidence level what more data and more spending could truly offer.

Is there resistance to using AI in the pharma area? 

Of course, our modelling has to meet the criteria of the regulatory bodies. We have reached a point where the advantages are clear - a large pharma company recently signed a $250M deal with a Machine Learning company! Moving forward, AI will not be such an issue. I hope this technology will push the boundaries of science and help people. 

About Edelweiss Connect

Edelweiss Connect has developed computer software that helps combine data from many different sources and formats into a useable form for evaluation and re-use. In addition, we have developed other software programs that can use the collected data and data from in vitro tests to predict the safety of chemical compounds in the human body.

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