Automatic design of novel potential 3CL$^{\text{pro}}$ and PL$^{\text{pro}}$ inhibitors

28 Jan 2021  ·  Timothy Atkinson, Saeed Saremi, Faustino Gomez, Jonathan Masci ·

With the goal of designing novel inhibitors for SARS-CoV-1 and SARS-CoV-2, we propose the general molecule optimization framework, Molecular Neural Assay Search (MONAS), consisting of three components: a property predictor which identifies molecules with specific desirable properties, an energy model which approximates the statistical similarity of a given molecule to known training molecules, and a molecule search method. In this work, these components are instantiated with graph neural networks (GNNs), Deep Energy Estimator Networks (DEEN) and Monte Carlo tree search (MCTS), respectively. This implementation is used to identify 120K molecules (out of 40-million explored) which the GNN determined to be likely SARS-CoV-1 inhibitors, and, at the same time, are statistically close to the dataset used to train the GNN.

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