PIPA and Mars, Incorporated accelerate science discovery


PIPA announced that it has entered into a multi-year agreement with Mars, Incorporated to accelerate the discovery of new, plant-based ingredients. PIPA’s Artificial Intelligence (AI) platform,  LEAP, will leverage biomedical databases and innovation pipelines to provide Mars with unique capabilities for designing new products to address growing consumer demand for health benefits from foods, beverages and dietary supplements. PIPA is an Artificial Intelligence company dedicated to accelerating scientific discovery in the service of innovation and commercialisation of products and services at the interface of food, nutrition and health.

Mars Associates will have the opportunity to use LEAP, thereby accelerating discovery compared with traditional ingredient-identification methods of randomised, high-throughput screening. LEAP combines state-of-the-art AI and bioinformatics to integrate biomedical databases, scientific publications, clinical trial and omics datasets to highlight associations among molecular and food-related entities with microbes and diseases. This helps predict connections that can accelerate new product development.

The new agreement comes after the completion of several AI-driven R&D engagements in human and pet health, including a demonstration that disease risk can be predicted from veterinary health data. Through this discovery work PIPA created a model that helped Mars to develop the RENALTECH diagnostic tool that predicts kidney disease in cats.

The agreement also reflects Mars’ and PIPA’s shared efforts to promote the health and wellbeing of people and pets through better health and nutrition. Both companies believe that use of AI could accelerate development of new products that deliver health benefits.

Nici Bush, VP, Innovation, Science and Technology at Mars said: “PIPA is an important and valuable research collaborator for Mars. Their science and technology strengths will translate into business impact, opening doors for Mars and the wider food industry.”

Dr. Abigail Stevenson, Vice President of the Mars Advanced Research Institute (MARI), which connects Mars with emerging science and technology, said: “PIPA’s capabilities are accelerating the development of MARI initiatives to help spark new discoveries that could lead to new products and services where Mars can improve the lives of people and their pets. We’re excited to work with them to explore new opportunities that can enhance nutrition and benefit health.”

PIPA and MARI will roll out LEAP to science, technology and innovation teams at Mars over the next two years. Mr. George Nikolaou, VP of Product at PIPA, said: “By joining forces with Mars, we are placing AI at the center of food, nutrition, and health. We are bringing to fruition new methods for science discovery that mean business teams empowered by AI can unlock novel, high-quality insights faster and more cost-effectively than previously imagined.”

Dr. Ilias Tagkopoulos, founder of PIPA and director of the USDA AI Institute of Next Generation Food Systems (AIFS) at University of California, Davis, commented on the role that AI has to play in Food and Health: “The next decade we will witness a paradigm shift in the way we understand food, its effect to our health and well-being. The trifecta of mapping the molecular atlas of food, leveraging state-of-the-art computational methods that learn from data and nurturing a vibrant ecosystem that translates discoveries to practice, creates the perfect storm for an unprecedented disruption and brings us one step closer to the Hippocratic “let food be thy medicine”.”

Read more of  the latest industry news and developments here: April 2022 Single Issue form – International Confectionery Magazine (in-confectionery.com)

Media contact

Roshini Bains,
Editor, International Confectionery
Tel: +44 (0) 1622 823 922
Email: editor@in-confectionery.com

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