German drugmaker Boehringer Ingelheim has sold an artificial intelligence-powered software platform it developed to monitor drug safety data to ArisGlobal, which provides cloud software to life sciences companies.
The platform – called BRASS (Benefit-Risk Analytic System) – was developed by Boehringer to unlock hidden patient safety signals from large data sets, and will be layered into ArisGlobal’s LifeSphere safety and pharmacovigilance platform.
Within LifeSphere – which is used by hundreds of life science firms – BRASS will be known as LifeSphere Clarity, said Boehringer.
The software can be used to conduct an initial analysis of adverse reactions to medications that have already been approved to identify potential side effects and undesirable events, and provides a decision-making tool for those working in pharmacovigilance, helping them process each case more quickly.
It learns from clinician input as well, drawing on experience with drug treatments and patient assessments to independently develop new findings.
BRASS is one of the products to emerge from Boehringer’s investment drive in digital health via its BI X subsidiary, which has also developed a pathological speech processing (PSP) programme to diagnose mental illness and the Advanced Design Assistant for Molecules (ADAM) platform for drug design.
Originally set up in 2017, the concept of BI X is to use digital innovation to accelerate the development of healthcare solutions and to help discovery of breakthrough treatments for humans and animals.
According to Robert Buchberger, head of patient safety and pharmacovigilance at Boehringer, the software “can help a pharmaceutical company understand the whole network of how diseases, comorbidities, effects and side effects of medications, as well as medical events influence each other.”
He added: “The ambition is to ensure that each patient gets the best and safest therapy option for them, and robust and rapid benefit-risk assessment also helps get the right therapies to patients faster.”
ArisGlobal chief product officer Pat Jenakanandhini said that the transfer of the software is a “marquee moment” in the digital health sector, as BRASS did not emerge a software startup but was built and validated by a leading pharma company.
That means it will provide a “unique and valuable capability that will resonate with other customers already using or exploring LifeSphere … as a signal and risk tool.”
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