Alán Aspuru-Guzik's AI-discovered molecules among ‘Breakthrough Technologies’ of 2020

February 26, 2020 by Dan Haves


The work of Alán Aspuru-Guzik, professor in the departments of chemistry and computer science at the University of Toronto, is recognized in this year’s MIT Technology Review ‘10 Breakthrough Technologies’.

‘AI-discovered molecules’ is one of the 10 technologies that MIT thinks will “shape the way we work and live now and for years to come” and they’ve highlighted two companies associated with Aspuru-Guzik as leaders in this field, Kebotix and Insilico Medicine.

Aspuru-Guzik is the co-founder and Chief Visionary Officer of Kebotix, a self-driving lab that combines machine learning and robotics to discover and produce advanced chemicals and materials faster and cheaper than traditional tools. 

He is also an advisor and collaborator with Insilico Medicine, a biotechnology company that explores the use of deep learning for drug discovery, personalized healthcare, and anti-aging interventions. They partnered with Aspuru-Guzik to create GENTRL, an artificial intelligence system for drug discovery that can rapidly generate novel molecular structures with specified properties.

Aspuru-Guzik is a Canada 150 Research Chair, CIFAR Lebovic Fellow and CIFAR AI Chair at Vector Institute. He is excited to see this field being recognized.

“This work shows the promise of integrating AI in scientific workflows,” he says. “As the field continues to integrate AI in different stages of discovery and translation, science will make it faster from the lab to the market.”

Other breakthrough technologies from this year include digital money, anti-aging drugs and an unhackable Internet.