Artificial intelligence (AI) is a powerful tool. It is fast, accurate, and ready to work. You already know that. But did you know it is invigorating the healthcare sector?
In this article, we will explore three ways AI is transforming the pharmaceutical industry. Having spent a big chunk of my career assisting the pharma industry, it felt timely to share the ways it is improving core processes to deliver better solutions for healthcare professionals and patients.
Without further ado, these are the three ways AI is making a difference in pharmaceuticals.
1. Trial Acceleration
Professionals in the medical field are using real-time data and analytics as trustworthy and informative resources for the quick diagnosis of a problem based on early pattern recognition. Pharma companies across the globe are also following the same path.
Since AI entered the scene, it has advanced the pharmaceutical sector and broadened research and trial programs. AI’s involvement enhances patient screening and speeds up trials for healing diseases.
When doctors embark on a clinical investigation with AI, they can analyze the histories and records of their patients at a much faster pace. And equally identify the individuals who are not suitable for the evaluation from those who are the perfect fit. This process helps prevent any wrong choices from being made, which in turn protects the patient from suffering significant losses and preserves the integrity of the trial.
Moreover, AI runs predictive models to foresee how a patient will react to specific medications or treatments. The results obtained are thorough. They cover every area of interest, including details on the chemical interactions and the side effects the patient might end up experiencing.
Based on the findings, specialists can respond better to the challenges ahead, diverting risks and advancing actionable plans to prepare the product and potentially save lives.
Big companies have hired AI to speed up their clinical research. For example, Pfizer deployed AI in its COVID-19 vaccine trials. A decision that sped up the screening of a 44,000-person study and resulted in the release of a vaccine with 95% effectiveness against the virus.
2. Drug Discovery and Development
The pharmaceutical industry puts great effort into drug research programs. Regardless, the results aren’t always favorable. It’s not uncommon for them to see their man hours and their financial investments flushed down the drain. AI changes this landscape by assisting scientists in their drug discovery and development attempts.
AI drug discovery software is a platform that deploys machine learning to analyze biomedical data from textbooks, clinical trials, and other related means to develop new molecule arrangements (drugs) that pioneer disease treatment.
Over the last three years, there’s been encouraging progress in this field. For instance, Bayer enlisted the services of an AI drug discovery provider to find drug candidates that treat cardiovascular and oncological diseases. AstraZeneca also partnered with a provider to seek solutions for systemic lupus erythematosus, heart failure, chronic kidney disease, and idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis. Other companies, including Sanofi, Genentech, and Pfizer, have ongoing work in this arena.
Another source of good news is that today, pharma companies can choose from several FDA-authorized AI drug discovery platforms to run their tests. This seal of approval adds credibility to the joint work with the tech’s provider.
3. Enhanced Manufacturing and Supply Chain
Last but not least, it’s how artificial intelligence makes a difference in pharmaceutical businesses’ manufacturing and supply chain processes.
The sophisticated AI software scans enormous amounts of data to uncover analytics that may be used for a variety of applications, including:
- Inform operators on real-time conditions;
- Facilitate decision-making;
- Raise awareness about hidden issues;
- Forward predictive maintenance practices;
- Facilitate operational prediction models and what-if analyses;
- Forecast product demand and distribution scenarios;
- Streamline customer characterization;
- Predict revenues, customer retention and gains;
- Assemble plans to stay competitive;
- And so much more!
Those are the three areas in the pharmaceutical industry where AI has had the greatest impact.
How do I see it evolving?
I believe the technology will go the distance.
- First, it will continue to infiltrate the industry in the coming years.
- Second, major work needs to be done to break down the public’s acceptability barrier and guarantee transparency about patient data. This includes tailoring policies and adding AI-based studies to healthcare plans.
- Third, it has the real potential to launch meaningful solutions for our livelihoods.