Life sciences giant Bayer has joined forces with clinical AI technology company Sensyne Health to help develop a national linked patient data capability.
The German firm has signed a memorandum of understanding to be the preferred pharmaceutical partner in a consortium, which includes Microsoft, EY, JP Morgan, and Peel Hunt.
The consortium aims to accelerate the discovery and development of new medicines and improve patient care through the analysis of large databases of anonymised patient data, using clinical AI.
“Bringing Bayer to the table, with its long history of drug discovery and in-depth pharmaceutical knowledge, will increase the chances of developing new medicines and ultimately help to relieve the strain on the NHS,” said Lord Paul Drayson, CEO of Sensyne Health.
Why does it matter?
Bayer’s role is to provide strategic insight and advice regarding the research, development and commercialisation of new medicines, medical devices and biomarkers.
The consortium aims to “help shape national health data policy that meets the government’s guiding principles to realise the full potential of NHS data whilst maintaining public trust", according to a press release.
It is currently working on developing proposals to scale Sensyne Health’s current network of strategic research agreements with NHS Trusts.
Bayer and Sensyne Health will also explore further collaboration between healthcare providers and life sciences companies using clinical AI technology to analyse anonymised patient medical data.
What’s the context?
Sensyne Health acts as a "docking station" for the analysis of anonymised patient data on behalf of its commercial partners under strict ethical control.
This ensures appropriate ethical oversight and information governance are applied, including conformance with NHS principles, EU data protection law and applicable regulatory guidance.
The NHS remains the controller of its patient data, and no data is sold or transferred to a third party.
On the record
Dr Kemal Malik, Bayer board member for Innovation, said: “Access to anonymised national linked patient data heralds a new era in the discovery and development of medicines.
“Through the application of artificial intelligence to large sets of patient information it becomes possible to identify people that are most likely to be at risk of diseases in the future. Importantly, this will allow steps to prevent their progress along that path.”