The Future is Here: Artificial Intelligence in Pharmaceutical Manufacturing
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Do you remember when IBM’s Watson beat two Jeopardy champions on live TV? Now artificial intelligence in pharma manufacturing is a reality. It’s almost crazy to think that soon we might be relying on artificial intelligence to create and manufacture drugs that people use every day. As you can imagine, the pharmaceutical experts throughout the industry all have different opinions about how viable AI is in their process. There’s no denying that pharmaceutical manufacturing using AI will completely transform how drugs are made and tested.
Pharmaceutical Artificial Intelligence History
To get a clear understanding of why the pharmaceutical industry is trying to use AI in manufacturing, it helps to look at the motivation. Pharmaceutical companies have always had a bit of a problem when it comes to drug development. The cost is high, and it can take a very long time to progress through all the stages of development between having the idea and bringing it to market. Naturally, companies are on the lookout for a more efficient way to produce drugs. Much of the drug manufacturing process revolves around the collection and analysis of data, so many companies want to try to use AI to comb through data and information about diseases and health to help identify patterns.
Data is the Key
Just like when Watson went through tons of data to find the right answer for a Jeopardy question, pharmaceutical manufacturing AI is looking to do the same thing with drugs. The difference between these two scenarios is the answer to this question for pharmaceutical manufacturing is far more complex. The key to artificial intelligence in pharmaceutical manufacturing is the collection of health data. Once that data is collected, AI analyzes it and tries to create hypotheses for creations of new drugs. But the AI doesn’t stop there. It still has to figure out what molecules have to be addressed and the chemical process needed.
While this all sounds great, there is a drawback. A main concern of pharmaceutical artificial intelligence is the quality of data being used. Artificial intelligence in pharmaceutical manufacturing is still new, so companies are still trying to figure out how to improve their AI infrastructure. If an AI uses bad data, it would waste a massive amount of resources and time.
Pharma Manufacturing AI Won’t Replace Humans
In conversations about AI, it’s not uncommon for people to think it will put people out of business. The good news is that unlike some other predictions with AI, pharmaceutical manufacturing AI will be more of a tool for people to use instead of a replacement. In fact, with more and more pharmaceutical companies using AI, there will likely be a spike in job creation for data scientists and AI engineers. The reason being is that due to what we mentioned before, companies need to make sure their AI is using the right processes and data. Right now, it seems like the move most companies are making is having AI assist them in their manufacturing until they are more confident in the technology. While assisting isn’t full blown pharmaceutical manufacturing AI, it’s a step in the right direction for transforming the industry.
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