Accenture Invests in Turbine, That is Building a Platform for Interpreting Human Biology Using AI

Accenture has made a strategic investment through Accenture Ventures in Turbine, a company that specializes in predictive simulation. This investment is aimed at accelerating the use of AI-powered cell simulations in biopharma research and development.

Turbine's core technology, the Simulated Cell™ platform, leverages machine learning to model molecular interactions within and around cells. This allows for virtual experiments that can reveal mechanisms driving diseases and responses to therapies. The platform is designed to perform virtual experiments at a scale nearly impossible in the physical world, thus providing valuable insights into biological systems.

This collaboration through the investment is expected to help global biopharma companies uncover hidden biological insights, which could guide and accelerate key drug development workstreams. It's particularly focused on uncovering promising drug targets, selecting patient populations most likely to benefit from therapy, and identifying combination therapy regimens.

The investment reflects Accenture's commitment to supporting technology and digital capabilities that drive innovation in AI-based drug discovery, with the ultimate goal of enhancing patient care and providing more effective treatments.

Turbine is the latest company to join Accenture Ventures’ Project Spotlight, an engagement and investment program focused on working with companies that create or apply disruptive enterprise technologies. Project Spotlight offers extensive access to Accenture’s domain expertise and its enterprise clients, helping startups harness creativity and deliver on the promise of their technology.

Earlier in March this year, Accenture, through Accenture Ventures, had invested in Sanctuary AI, a company specializing in the development of AI-powered humanoid robots.

Besides Turbine, other digital simulation companies in Project Spotlight include QuantHealth, Virtonomy and Ocean Genomics.

Since most unsolved complex diseases are heterogenous, progress in utilizing AI for drug discovery is hindered by ethical and technological limitations in sourcing deep and diverse ground truth data. To bridge this gap, we need a toolkit that can learn fundamental rules of biology on in vitro experiments and apply to patients that it has never seen before. Turbine's Simulated Cells can be engineered at scale to represent the heterogeneity of complex human disease better than currently available wet lab experimental models, which are inherently biased towards representing certain disease types and hardly scalable,” said Szabolcs Nagy, co-founder and CEO of Turbine.

By tapping into Accenture’s expertise, we hope to expand our market reach and augment our simulation platform in order to benefit the whole biopharma industry by ensuring that the next experiment is always the correct one", Nagy added.

Founded in 2015 by Kristof Szalay, Ph.D., Daniel Veres, M.D., Ph.D., Szabolcs Nagy and Ivan Fekete, M.D., Turbine is based in London, UK, with offices in Budapest, Hungary and Cambridge, UK. The team’s vision is to overcome the current limitations in identifying oncology treatments with true patient benefit by combining molecular biology and interpretable machine learning.

Turbine’s latest investment round (Series A) was closed in June 2023 which was €5.5 million from MassMutual Ventures. Prior to this, in 2022, Turbine raised finding which was co-led by MSD (Merck & Co., Inc., Rahway NJ, USA) Global Health Innovation Fund (GHIF) and Mercia Asset Management, who were joined by both new and existing investors Delin Ventures, Day One Capital, Accel, Atlantic Labs, XTX Ventures, o2h Ventures and Boston Millenia Partners.

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