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GSK hires Branson from Genentech to boost AI team

July 11, 2019 / Nick Paul Taylor

GlaxoSmithKline has bolstered its artificial intelligence team by hiring Kim Branson from Genentech. The appointment gives Branson oversight of GSK’s efforts to use AI to find novel drug targets. Branson headed up AI at Genentech’s early clinical development unit for about a year before joining GSK recently as global head of artificial intelligence and machine learning. The appointment is the latest in a series of moves by GSK designed to revitalize its R&D operation through the use of technology. “The most impactful way any company will change its performance is making the timelines shorter, the costs lower and the probability of success higher,” GSK CEO Emma Walmsley told Bloomberg, the first publication to report news of Branson’s appointment. Branson arrives at GSK following a career spent straddling the line between drug development and computing. Early in his career, Branson spent two years at computational drug design pioneer Vertex before sides...