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26/05/2016 - Press release

European project eTOX launches a new video

The video presents the 2nd hackathon event held at PRBB and gives an insight into the eTOX project.

When bringing to market any new drug efficiency and safety are essential. R+D Departments in pharmaceutical companies spend lots of efforts to make sure the new compounds meet the highest standards. In the process, large amounts of useful information are produced, that traditionally end up buried in the archives of pharmaceutical companies. Committed to avoiding duplicating processes, wasting time and resources, 13 pharmaceutical industries, 7 academic institutions and 5 SMEs launched the eTOX project. The result of the project will be a comprehensive database with toxicity studies for thousands of drugs (or drug candidates) and a collection of original software applications for toxicity prediction. In the framework of this innovative and multidisciplinary project, the second edition of the eTOX Hackathon was held in Barcelona on 7-10 March 2016 at the Barcelona Biomedical Research Park (PRBB).

The hackathons are focused in toxicology modelling and participants cover a wide spectrum of backgrounds: from industry toxicologists companies like Novartis, Bayer, Sanofi and Roche to academic bioinformaticians such as FIMIM, Fraunhofer, CNIO and UPV, and SMEs Lead Molecular Design, Lhasa Ltd and Molecular Networks. Intense and efficient inter-disciplinary collaboration is challenging and, at the same time, a prerequisite for the eTOX objective of improved safety assessment.

The three challenges undertaken this year have been:

1. Hepatotoxicity modelling

2. Incorporating additional data beyond the eTOX database

3. Multiscale drug-induced liver toxicity prediction tool

The hackathons produced in a few days original and valuable results. This success demonstrates the importance of an appropriate approach, and the enriching effect of inter-disciplinary collaboration in an adequate scenario to push the boundaries in the knowledge of toxicology.

The eTOX project aims to develop a drug safety database from the pharmaceutical industry legacy toxicology reports and public toxicology data, innovative in silico strategies and novel software tools to better predict the toxicological profiles of small molecules in early stages of the drug development pipeline. The eTOX project is funded by the Innovative Medicines Initiative Joint Undertaking (IMI-JU), a unique partnership between the European Community and the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA) and coordinated by the Research Programe on Biomedical Informatics, GRIB (IMIM-UPF).

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