Huadong Medicine and Exscientia enter co-development partnership to accelerate oncology drug discovery through artificial intelligence

First project in partnership will focus on the discovery of novel therapies for areas of DNA damage repair.

Exscientia, the world-leading, clinical-stage Artificial Intelligence (AI) drug discovery company and Huadong Medicine, the leading Chinese pharmaceutical company, announced today that the companies have entered into a co-development partnership to accelerate the discovery of breakthrough small-molecule therapeutics targeted at innovative approach to oncology. The first project selected in partnership is focused on transcription control of DNA damage response genes, to treat patients with defective DNA damage repair mechanism, leading to high mutation frequency, as seen is in patients with ovarian cancer and breast cancer.

Under this collaboration, the pharmatech Exscientia and Huadong will share responsibilities, with Exscientia applying its advanced Centaur Chemist(TM) AI platform to design new molecules against project specific objectives and Huadong Medicine applying its China based experimental and managerial capabilities to generate data and progress Exscientia’s AI design in a rapid closed-loop cycle.

Huadong Medicine Co., Ltd (SZSE 000963), ranked in the top 10 Chinese pharmaceutical companies by Forbes 2020, with more than 10,000 employees and over US $4 Billion annual revenue. The co- development partnership will support both Huadong’s strategy to introduce new medicines in key markets and Exscientia’s aims to advance AI-designed innovative medicines globally.

“This collaboration marks a key step for Huadong on its journey to become an innovation-based pharmaceutical company. We are pleased to work with Exscientia and are fully committed to make this collaboration a success.”, said Lyu Liang, Chairman of Huadong.

Professor Andrew Hopkins, CEO of Exscientia, said, “We are very excited to enter the partnership with Huadong Medicine. This innovative partnership provides strategic benefits to Huadong Medicine and Exscientia. We see this as the start of a long-term productive relationship to accelerate novel drug discovery and bring benefits to patients around the globe.”

About Huadong

Huadong Medicine Co., Ltd. was established in 1993 and headquartered in Hangzhou, Zhejiang Province, went public on the Shenzhen Stock Exchange (SZ.000963) in 1999. Huadong is a leading Chinese pharmaceutical company with integrated R&D, manufacture, marketing, sales, distribution and logistics and focuses on R&D, production and sales of medication for specialist departments, chronic diseases and special medicine. Huadong has formed core product pipelines in such fields as chronic kidney diseases, transplantation immunity, endocrinology and digestive system, and owns a number of first-line clinical medications with market advantages in China. Huadong has more than 10,000 employees and sales force covers nearly 30,000 hospitals in China. The R&D organization currently has more than 1000 FTEs involved in small molecule, biologics and polypeptide drugs, supporting drug discovery, preclinical research, clinical development, CMC and regulatory. For more details, please visit

About Exscientia

Exscientia is a global leading pharmatech company, using Artificial Intelligence (AI) to drive drug discovery. Founded in Scotland in 2012, Exscientia fuses the power of the original AI with the experience of seasoned drug hunters, Exscientia’s innovative Centaur Chemist(TM) platform enables breakthrough productivity gains as well as new approaches to improve drug design. Novel compounds are automatically designed and prioritized for synthesis by its AI systems, which rapidly evolve compounds towards the desired candidate criteria for clinical development. Exscientia’s Centaur Biologist(TM) platform drives the flexible analysis and prioritisation of discovery targets across all pharmaceutically relevant disease space. Exscientia is collaborating with several leading pharmaceutical and life sciences companies and is the first AI company to have designed a novel molecule to enter the clinic. Exscientia has its headquarters in Oxford, England with further offices in the Scotland, USA and Japan. For more information visit us on or follow us on Twitter @exscientialtd.


For Exscientia
Milly Xia Chen, Commercial Director
Mark Swindells, Chief Commercial Officer
Anitra Sprauten, Edelman +44 (0)78 9685 9386

For Huadong Medicine
Bo Chen

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