Merck Acquires Start-up with Retro-Synthesis Software

  • Author: ChemistryViews.org
  • Published: 13 May 2017
  • Copyright: Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA
  • Source / Publisher: Merck KGaA
  • Associated Suppliers: Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany
thumbnail image: Merck Acquires Start-up with Retro-Synthesis Software

Merck has acquired Grzybowski Scientific Inventions (GSI). GSI was founded in 2013 by Bartosz Grzybowski who invented Chematica, a computer-aided retro-synthesis tool. Financial details of the transaction were not disclosed.

According to GSI, Chematica can design chemically viable synthetic pathways for complex targets - including drugs, natural products, theoretical molecules - within seconds. It uses advanced reaction rules (tens of thousands of expert-defined rules of chemical reactivity) and proprietary algorithms to identify synthesis pathways that meet user-defined constraints and lead to desired targets in the most cost-effective way.

According to Merck, virtual synthesis significantly reduces the time between chemical target conception and route evaluation by using a lab’s preferences to filter millions of data points. Significant benefit is especially seen in the fields of medicinal chemistry and drug discovery.


The Chematica tool is available now through a limited release for users in academia and in industry.


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