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AI in Pharma - Summit SummaryGiven the increasingly decisive role of AI and machine learning in Pharma industry, it becomes progressively crucial to learn, adopt and integrate latest technologies to keep your business competitive. We discover latest AI trends and developments within Pharma and network with professionals across both industry and academia.

I just wanted to thank all the organisers and Speakers and attendees for an amazing second AI in Pharma Summit last week in Munich. This was an important event last year for us at Volv as the open and collaborative nature of the event meant that we got to work on some really interesting challenges over the last 12 months taking us in new and innovative directions.

We really wanted this year's event to again have the same level of intense content discussion, insight into what people had been achieving using data science over the last year or so, and it did not disappoint!

We had amazing talks covering the Pharmaceutical value chain from drug discovery, molecular engineering, market access, regulatory content management, supply chain monitoring, digital diagnostics and digital pathology, pharmacovigilance progress. with contributions across academia and commercial.

So thanks go to Thomas Wilckens from InnVentis talking about Precision Medicine beyond Cancer: Why We Need New Multi-omics Driven Definitions for Health & Disease. Thomas has a far reaching vision about integrating all of the data to define diseases in new ways and present new thinking about what the industry could be.

Eva Maria Bieda from Roche gave us great insights as to what can be learnt and also then accomplished when introducing the transformative power of AI initiative into large organisations in her talk, “AI meets Roche - Organisational Change Management” with a focus on transformation in Pharmacovigilance. This shows how important it is to bring the organisation with you on a new evolutionary journey, but also to learn from the organisation itself.

We saw from Daniel Koppers at Cunesoft in his talk: “Can AI deliver value for content management in Life Sciences?”, how indeed they are solving difficult challenges in the content management arena as well as IDMP and may other sue cases across the medical and regulatory arena in the pharmaceutical industry for their clients.

Fabian Sailer from Imec talked about how harnessing the data from their sensor devices can allow the Optimization of Supply Chain Management with AI Strategies, when customers have access to all the sensor data on their products in the supply chain. I think they have a massive opportunity here commercially.

Dilyana Kalinova from Sanofi gave us an overview of the challenges in managing Complex data for workflow support of high-throughput protein engineering, which highlights the true complexity of being able to build molecules and how data science is totally implicit in all parts of these processes and how it gets a whole level more challenging when you move from simple molecule construction to complex molecules.

Mishal Patel from AstraZeneca gave us his vision in his talk “Leveraging Real World Big Data to Accelerate Clinical Drug Development” and how his team is collaborating to solve challenges for AstraZeneca across their value chain, which was inspiring to see and particularly encouraging to see how bioinformaticians are harnessing data opportunities to directly improve patient journeys.

There was a lively panel discussion on the issues and implications of giving access to Data and also in how to Humanise Advanced Applications of AI.

The second day was kicked off by an inspiring presentation by Agata Wejman from NovoNordisk looking at how to enable companies from a legal perspective in her talk: “Wired for AI-innovation - data-driven innovative business models and corporate organization considerations for the AI era”. This highlighted the complex collaborative models that are emerging around data ownership, use of data, value derived through algorithms and more, clearly informed by her experience in the data centric technology sector.

Thanks to Dr. John Pietzsch from Bayer who showed us how pragmatically his team approached the “Use of Artificial Intelligence for Individual Case Safety Report (ICSR) Intake” over the last months, with surprising success and accuracy for managing content from diverse sources. This showed us how one can go about assessing and selecting best practice approaches as well as vendor selection for large scale, but also innovative projects.

We had an amazing presentation that, I believe we can say, blew our minds about the future of applying deep-learning to digital pathology by Andrew Janowczyk from Case Western Reserve University and the Swiss Institute of Bioinformatics in his talk “Computational Pathology: Towards Precision Medicine”. Just learning about what is being done by himself and his teams of researchers was awe inspiring, as it will have a tangible impact on human health in the very near future.

Matthias Samwald from the Medical University in Vienna proposed a far reaching vision in his talk “Transforming Pharma and Medicine through AI: A macrostrategic view”, His talk should be seriously considered for the potential that we have to transform a whole industry through a deep learning perspective (without the hype!) with a focus on clear healthcare system as well as patient benefits.

Muneer Ahmad used his experience in working on Complex Fully Convolutional Neural Networks for MR Image Reconstruction using raw MRI data to talk about how he and his teams are supporting data workflow to support massive data and compute requirements at NetApp in his talk: “Edge to Core to Cloud for the Enterprise AI Pipeline”.

Finally thanks go to Marcel Rupprecht who provoked the audience on the controversial topic of “AI versus Humans” in the medical and life sciences setting, and who allowed us to turn his presentation into a group discussion on some of the real challenges of introducing real AI applications into the clinical and medical industry settings today.

Thanks also go to all the other attendees for their contributions and questions throughout.

Of course, last thanks got to Curtis Wyss for organising the event, looking forward to next year!