Nvidia- and AWS-Backed Bioresearch Startup Launches 'ESM3' Model

EvolutionaryScale, a startup backed by Nvidia and Amazon Web Services (AWS), this week launched a new version of an AI model for protein design.

The new model, ESM3, is a collaboration between the three companies, who tout it as a key development in medical and pharmaceutical research, among numerous other use cases.

"ESM3 simultaneously reasons over the sequence, structure and functions of proteins, giving protein discovery engineers a programmable platform," EvolutionaryScale commented in its announcement of the release, while AWS' announcement indicated, "This milestone generative AI model allows interactive prompting to create proteins, empowering scientists to advance applications from drug discovery, and materials science, to carbon capture."

Matt Wood, Amazon's Vice President of AI Products, explained the model's significance and potential impact in a public LinkedIn post:

The opportunity for AI to improve health care is huge: it will be one of the biggest drivers of health and wellness improvements this decade - accelerating the momentum behind precision care, drug discovery, and biological research and development by several orders of magnitude….
ESM3 can reason over the sequences, structures, and functions of proteins to generate new protein structures - with atomic level accuracy - which "fit" within the complex, multi-dimensional systems of real biology while meeting the precise functional requirements of the prompt…
Using models like these, there is an opportunity to speed up drug development by designing active molecules more quickly and efficiently, create more personalized treatments, drive down antibiotic resistance, improve diagnostics and disease detection (especially for rare diseases), create new vaccines, and improve chronic disease management.

Read the entire post here.

The model opened in a closed beta this week, while "code and weights are available for a small open version of ESM3 for non-commercial use" (go here for more information). A live public date has yet to be announced.

When released, it will be available via "select partner platforms," which include Nvidia BioNeMo, Amazon Bedrock, Amazon Sagemaker and AWS HealthOMICs. The live model will also come with the ability to be fine-tuned, the companies said, so that scientists can use it to "construct purpose-built models based on their own proprietary data."

For more on EvolutionaryScale, go here.

About the Author

Becky Nagel is the former editorial director and director of Web for 1105 Media's Converge 360 group, and she now serves as vice president of AI for company, specializing in developing media, events and training for companies around AI and generative AI technology. She's the author of "ChatGPT Prompt 101 Guide for Business Users" and other popular AI resources with a real-world business perspective. She regularly speaks, writes and develops content around AI, generative AI and other business tech. Find her on X/Twitter @beckynagel.