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GoOn Research and Development Project Wins Theseus-Mittelstand
Proposed by Transinsight, RESprotect, Antikörper-Online, and TU Dresden, the GoOn project will focus on developing semantic technologies for the biomedical domain
The first goal of the project is to develop a specialized search engine to find antibody mentions in ordinary —not only scientific— texts. Antibodies play an important role in modern pharmaceutical research when, for example, labeling genes and proteins for optical particle tracking. Gene and protein names do not belong to a standardized nomenclature and developed rather organically in the years of their discovery. Of the approximate 500,000 to 1,000,000 human proteins, each protein has an average of five synonyms and often hundreds of spelling variants. Furthermore, there are some proteins that share a common name and for which the context needs to be analyzed in order to classify them properly. Transinsight will work closely with antibody vendor Antikörper-Online on this area of the project to develop intelligent matching algorithms and new semantic advertisement technologies.
The second goal is the development of a semantic platform to elucidate gene interaction networks. Transinsight, RESprotect, and TU Dresden will work together to develop methods for the elucidation of BVDU, a highly promising drug against pancreatic cancer, currently in late-stage clinical trial. The end goal is to integrate all textual information with already known data to better understand the activity of the drug and optimize subsequent compounds.
“This is a great opportunity to contribute to the fight against pancreatic cancer, which is one of the most aggressive forms of cancer and, until now, very poorly understood. We will work to help provide a deeper understanding of the disease and drug mechanisms through our exclusive semantic search technologies. We hope this will ultimately result in improvements to current treatments and the development of new drugs,” said Prof. Dr. Michael Schroeder from the TU Dresden. Dr. Schroeder is leading the research on the identification of gene and protein names and their interactions. He explained, “Today, the precision of known methods is as small as 30%. Our goal is to push this number to 90% and offer a more practical and accurate system.”
Transinsight will be spearheading the consortium for the next two years. Michael R. Alvers, CEO of Transinsight, stated, “We are proud to work with such great partners in developing technologies to advance scientific work in areas as important as antibody and pancreatic cancer research. We are confident we will set important semantic landmarks and bring to international attention the competitiveness and leading-edge of German start-ups. The work we did under Theseus One provides an ideal base to build on and will allow us to move quickly. We expect we will soon be able to show achievements that go even beyond life sciences.”
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