IT services firm Tech Mahindra has said that the company's research and development arm Makers Lab, is taping into Artificial Intelligence (AI) to conduct research and find potential therapeutic drugs for the treatment of Covid-19.
Makers Lab conducted molecular docking studies of 19 Food and Drug Administration approved ligands and anti-viral drugs. It is a technique that enables search for therapeutically potent drugs and molecules in real-time, to find compounds which can act as inhibitors against a viral protein computationally, according to the Pune-based company's statement.
Tech Mahindra said, the development was just the first step where computational analysis can reduce the amount of time taken to narrow down the search amongst the vast array of molecules present in the process of finding a cure to the pandemic. "There is more work needed to be done to move the process from molecular docking to actual drug design, testing and drug development at scale."
“As a leading global digital transformation provider, Tech Mahindra is not only committed to ensure the well-being of our employees, customers and partner ecosystem, but we are also invested in finding a potential cure for COVID-19 by leveraging cutting edge and futuristic technologies like AI,” said CP Gurnani, managing director & CEO, Tech Mahindra.
Nikhil Malhotra, global head of makers Lab, said the experiment was to prevent the entry of virus into human host cells such as lung airway epithelial cells while the finding a generally recognised as Safe (GRAS) agent which can inhibit the virus was the strategy.