IBM, the No. 2 U.S. computer company, unveiled an advanced analytical software and services tool that used its powerful Watson supercomputer.
Using cloud computing techniques, the business analytics and optimization strategic IP insight platform (SIIP) can be used for data mining and extract information from enormous libraries of data.
IBM’s first application of SIIP was to sift through 25 years of pharmaceutical patents to determine all the chemical compounds mentioned in more than 5,700 patent applications, research scientist Ying Chen told the International Business Times.
The five-year project yielded a database of 2.4 million chemical compounds extracted from a computer analysis of 4.7 million patents as well as 11 million biomedical abstracts. Chen declined to tell IBTimes the cost or the number of staff involved.
In the third quarter alone, Armonk, N.Y.-based IBM spent $1.55 billion, nearly six percent of corporate revenue, on research and development.
The database – extracted from patents provided by AstraZeneca, BristolMyers Squibb, DuPont and Pfizer – has been donated to the U.S. National Institutes of Health, which will incorporate it into the National Center for Biotechnology Information’s PubChem and Computer-Aided Drug Design Group.
Chen, a computer scientist, told IBTimes the database does not include current patents and data, so that the contributors don’t face risk of revealing current areas of interest. “The drug companies certainly don’t want others to know what particular chemical compounds are of current interest to them,” she explained. The patent analysis ranged from 1976 to 2000.
Now that the IBM research database will reside at the NIH, researchers should be able to tap into it for immediate analysis of similar chemical information found in new patent filings and journal publications, Chen said.
Meanwhile, Chen, a scientist at IBM’s Almaden Laboratories in San Jose, Calif., told IBTimes the same analytical tools can be used to analyze large masses of data in other verticals supported by IBM, such as insurance and financial services.
“Core capabilities have been applied already” to other verticals using the SIIP platform, Chen said, including consumer goods where developers might want to determine chemical compounds used in a face cream, for example.
Using Watson, the IBM supercomputer whose February 2011 romp on “Jeopardy” vanquishing human players won worldwide attention, IBM has made a big gamble on health and life sciences.
Next quarter, it plans the first commercial rollout of its technology with WellPoint, the Indianapolis-based health maintenance group. In October, it said Seton Healthcare Family in Austin, Tex., would be the first customer to use IBM Content and Predictive Analytics for Healthcare.
IBM shares traded around $191.96, down $2.08 late Thursday, giving it a market capitalization of $226.3 billion.