Fields CQAM Welcomes ProteinQure to its Incubated Startup Program

ProteinQure co-founders Mark Fingerhuth, Chris Ing, Lucas Siow, and Tomas Babej

Toronto, ON – The Fields Centre for Quantitative Analysis and Modelling (Fields CQAM) is excited to announce the first member of its 2018 – 2019 cohort of incubated startups, ProteinQure.

ProteinQure, a Toronto based biotech firm, creates computational R&D tools to perform protein-drug design in-silico. The discovery of new protein drugs poses a challenge for pharmaceutical and computational drug-discovery companies alike, due to their structural complexity and dynamic flexibility. Current approaches to target driven drug discovery are laborious, commonly utilizing high throughput screening to identify potential molecules of interest. ProteinQure tackles the problem from a novel angle, leveraging quantum computing and artificial intelligence to enable the rational design of protein-based drugs via simulations of the protein folding and binding process.

“We’re very excited to be working with ProteinQure,” said Fields Deputy Director Huaxiong Huang. “As the only company in the biotech space employing quantum computing and reinforcement learning to tackle problems in structural biology and drug design, they have the potential to disrupt existing drug discovery platforms by rapidly accelerating and facilitating the drug discovery process.”

The Fields Institute has a long history of fostering some of the best and brightest Canadian startups of the last fifteen years, including Sigma Analysis, R2 Financial Technologies, and Synchrony Consulting Services. Fields CQAM builds on this tradition, encouraging the founding of and supporting startups based on mathematical techniques with real-world applications. The Centre’s incubation program places its entrepreneurs at the heart of a thriving mathematical ecosystem, giving them access to the physical, intellectual, and logistical resources of Fields CQAM, the Fields Institute, and its partners.

“Partnering with the Fields Institute is a huge honour for our team. At ProteinQure we’re continuously pushing the boundaries in the fields of mathematics, computer science and theoretical physics,” said Mark Fingerhuth, founder and CEO of ProteinQure. “Being a member of the Fields CQAM incubator program enables us to rapidly advance our mathematical research and provides us with a platform to share our novel contributions at the intersection of near-term quantum computing and drug discovery.”

By facilitating access to talent and cutting-edge mathematical research, Fields CQAM is empowering its startups with the tools and networks needed to help push them to the forefront of Ontario’s burgeoning tech sector. By facilitating access to talent and cutting-edge mathematical research, Fields CQAM is empowering its startups with the tools and networks needed to help push them to the forefront of Ontario’s burgeoning tech sector.

About ProteinQure

ProteinQure is a Canadian start-up building next-generation tools for computational protein drug design. Integrating state-of-the-art molecular modeling with algorithms in reinforcement learning and quantum computing, ProteinQure is reimagining how pharmaceutical companies discover novel therapeutics. Accurate biophysical models enable them to design drugs without reliance on large data sets and tackle some of the most challenging targets linked to cancer and autoimmune disease. ProteinQure is one of the first successful graduates of the Quantum Machine Learning stream at the Creative Destruction Lab incubator (University of Toronto). They have partnerships with the majority of quantum computing hardware providers and are currently conducting collaborative research with drug discovery labs in academia and industry.

About the Fields Centre for Quantitative Analysis and Modelling (Fields CQAM)

Fields CQAM is a network of academic-industry laboratories, their international collaborators, student trainees, and the industrial partners able to efficiently commercialize applied mathematical research for the benefit of the broader economy. These province wide innovation clusters address the expanding need for data analytics in modern industry, and transfer talent, challenges, and solutions between Fields-CQAM and its broader receptor community. Their vision? To make Ontario the international leader in developing and deploying advanced mathematical methodologies for the emerging knowledge economy. For more information, including funding opportunities, please visit www.cqam.ca

Available for comment in Toronto

Huaxiong Huang, Director of Fields CQAM
hhuang@fields.utoronto.ca; +1 416 – 348 – 9710, ext. 3020

Mark Fingerhuth, Chief Executive Officer, ProteinQure
mark@proteinqure.com ; + 1 437-779-8504

For more information and to arrange for interviews, please contact:

Tracy Barber
Development & Partnerships Officer, Fields-CQAM
The Fields Institute for Research in Mathematical Sciences

1 416-348-9710, ext. 3024
tracy.barber@cqam.ca