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Quantum Cloud Growth and the Future of Computing

Just a few years ago, truly viable and useful quantum computing was the stuff of legends and campfire tales among computer scientists, but development in the last year has led to an explosion of quantum resources available to companies in the cloud. The evolution of the quantum machine has been accelerated by the development of different types of qubits including trapped ion, spin qubits, and superconducting qubits as well as the integration of multiple qubits into faster and more reliable computing systems. The access to such high powered quantum annealing systems is changing the cloud computing landscape for companies like POLARISqb, and that access allows our Tachyon system to perform drug discovery and optimization for protein targets at speeds that can far exceed even the best conventional supercomputers. D-Waves 128 Chip from its Quantum Annealer

The biggest player in the quantum cloud computing industry is Amazon Web Services, who are able to offer access to quantum computers from Rigetti, D-Wave, and IonQ through its multi-layered quantum service, Braket. Braket gives programmers the ability to develop software that is built to run on a quantum platform and test it on multiple different quantum computing architectures. Whether you are utilizing annealing, as our systems do, or want to access a gate structure or trapped ion computer, users have the ability to move relatively seamlessly between systems. In a field that exists at the vanguard of scientific research, this flexibility is an invaluable tool in the pocket of developers.

How do these multiple offerings benefit Amazon Web Services? First, they can attract more users. Also,  they are able to use the information on the operations of various quantum systems to better understand the functionalities they provide and the strengths and weaknesses of each system. As they provide users the ability to run multiple iterations of their algorithms at a fairly reasonable price point (both per shot and per task), Amazon Web Services  are building institutional knowledge about the ways in which quantum computing solutions can be implemented across industries and in various scientific fields. Amazon looks at providing this service as a kind of starting point or launch pad for quantum computing to be explored by companies like ours, and we are using this launch pad to take off to new heights of in silico drug research and development. 

The ability to easily access quantum computing architecture through the cloud is game changing for companies like POLARISqb. The ability to build and test our code on multiple platforms gave us the opportunity to revolutionize the way that drug discovery research is done in a computational environment. As our team of chemists and programmers continues to develop our software and the ability to better understand the relationships of various small molecules with particular protein binding pockets to create new potential drugs to solve myriad diseases that have eluded researchers so far.

POLARISqb, Developers of First Quantum Drug Discovery Platform, Announces Seed Investment of $2.1 Million

POLARISqb, the Durham based developer of the world’s first drug discovery software built for quantum computers, announces that it has received the first round of their seed raise, totalling over two million dollars. This funding will allow Polaris to grow their team, scale the platform and develop assets faster. 

POLARISqb’ seed round is led by OurCrowd, and joined by Infinity Medical.OurCrowd is a global venture investing platform empowering institutions and individuals to invest and engage in emerging companies. With $1.8 billion of committed funding, and investments in more than 280 portfolio companies and 28 venture funds. Infinity Medical focused on advanced digital health technologies, with portfolio companies on the cutting edge of health innovation, in transition from development to global sales. 


“OurCrowd has allowed us to reach investors in a modern and engaging manner, building relationships that will provide opportunities for continued growth and connection with stakeholders from around the globe.” said POLARISqb CEO Shahar Keinan. 


David Sokolic, Investment Partner at OurCrowd, explains “OurCrowd has developed a cogent investment thesis around quantum computing and has made several previous related investments in enabling hardware and software development tools. We are pleased to now add POLARISqb to our growing portfolio in this rapidly emerging field. POLARISqb’s unique approach of applying the power of quantum computing to the discovery of novel drug candidates at a fraction of the time and cost of conventional methods represents one of the first commercial examples of quantum-powered application software delivering tangible benefits surpassing what was previously achievable.”

She Blinded Me with Science: The Art of Communicating Scientific Knowledge

The pace of scientific discovery today moves at an alarming rate, and often there are great challenges in communicating scientific concepts that many would believe you need a masters degree to understand. However, many scientists and researchers are finding unique ways to share the knowledge that they are creating with the wider world to the benefit of all, both in entertainment value and dissemination of information.

Recently, Ars Technica covered the 13th year of the "Dance your Ph.D." contest, with entrants from the fields of physics, chemistry, biology, and social sciences hailing from around the world, and creating some amazing content that is both a joy to watch and scientifically accurate and informative. The winners hailed from Helsinki and filmed their video in a Covid safe and extremely cold environment, fighting both the elements and interference from the local meteorological institute. The winner, Jakub Kubecka won this contest with a hip hop music video dance based on his work on the physics of atmospheric molecular clusters. We are impressed by all of the entrants work and know that their work will inspire other scientists to seek new and innovative ways to communicate their own research.

Obviously the importance of scientific communication has been at the forefront of many people's minds this years with the Covid-19 epidemic forcing people around the world to delve more deeply into the world of virology than they had ever thought they would. This has also provided the opportunity to develop communication tools that are not only scientifically accurate, but can save lives simply by disseminating accurate information about the virus. A recent Washingtonian article highlighted the work of many graphic designers who have developed a series of posters that you can print and use in your own life, many of which were both poignant and stunningly beautiful.

The more that people are able to engage with science and develop their own scientific literacy, the better situations like the recent pandemic can be handled. And while not everyone will likely go out and get a Ph.D. in computational chemistry or microbiology, understanding the scientific concepts that can affect our everyday lives, from climate change to medical research, is a valuable endeavor for all.

PM 360 Recognizes POLARISqb as a 2020 Innovative Startup

PM 360 is one of the leading magazines in the pharmaceutical marketing world, with an audience of marketing decision makers in the pharmaceutical, biotech, and medical device industries. Published monthly, the magazine focuses on leadership as well as, "issues that directly impact critical decision making,including: planning and implementation of cutting edge strategies, trends, the latest technological advances," in their writing.

This year, POLARISqb was honored to be one of eight companies that were named "Innovative Startups" by the magazine, along with EvozyneSteady ShotImmunAIExocelwePoolConversation Health and Theraneutrics. These companies are working with some of the most advanced technologies such as artificial intelligence, nanotechnology, and synthetic biotech to address medical issues from diabetes to COVID-19, but POLARISqb stands alone as the sole quantum application selected to the list. Having developed a quantum application for designing drugs, we continue to pursue a vastly greater understanding of our chemical universe, identifying molecules that will become treatments and cures for all diseases for all people. Advancements in quantum computers technology continue to speed our work towards a quantum-based platform that provides chemical simulations at many times the speed of current traditional systems.

We are proud to be recognized for our work and innovation in drug discovery for biopharma applications by one of the leading publications on pharmaceutical marketing, a list that has in the past included companies such as H1 who went on to raise over $71M in capital funding and OM1 who raised over $86M, and Sema4 which raised over $240M. POLARISqb looks to be the next in their line of success, and the first quantum alumni of the list to revolutionize the world of biotech and pharmaceuticals.