Merck acquires Grzybowski Scientific Inventions to expand chemical synthesis offering

MerckMerck, a leading science and technology company, today announced the acquisition of Grzybowski Scientific Inventions (GSI), a company that developed the revolutionary computer-aided retro-synthesis tool, Chematica. Chematica uses advanced reaction rules and proprietary algorithms to identify synthesis pathways that meet user-defined constraints. Financial details of the transaction were not disclosed.

"With a 350-year legacy in the pharmaceutical and chemistry business, we recognize the attractiveness of the chemical synthesis and cheminformatics market and how it complements our existing leadership position in chemicals and reagents," said Udit Batra, Member of the Merck Executive Board and CEO, Life Science.

Virtual synthesis significantly reduces the time between chemical target conception and route evaluation by using a lab's preferences to filter millions of data points. The tool quickly and efficiently provides optimized routes, providing significant benefit to all researchers, especially those working in medicinal chemistry and drug discovery.

GSI's knowledge base of tens of thousands of expert-defined rules of chemical reactivity, combined with proprietary algorithms, enables the program to scrutinize millions of synthetic pathways and to choose the routes that lead to desired targets in the most cost-effective way.

"As chemists who grew up with Sigma-Aldrich and Millipore in the lab, we couldn’t be more proud to be acquired by a company with such a long legacy and sincere interest in chemistry," said Bartosz Grzybowski, founder of GSI and inventor of Chematica. "Combining our revolutionary planning tool with Merck’s large number of available starting materials, and its industry leading e-commerce platform, will provide immense value to our customers."

The Chematica tool is available now through a limited release for users in academia and in industry.

About Grzybowski Scientific Inventions (GSI)
Grzybowski Scientific Inventions (GSI) is a start-up company with exclusive licensing, development, marketing and sales rights to the revolutionary chemistry decision-making and synthetic planning software product Chematica. Since its establishment in December 2013, GSI has successfully engaged a clientele composed of a wide range of industries as well as academic and government institutions from all over the world. Today, Chematica is widely recognized as the first computer program capable of "chemical thinking" and the only expert system able to design chemically viable synthetic pathways for complex targets - including drugs, natural products as well as theoretical molecules - within seconds.

About Merck
Merck is a leading science and technology company in healthcare, life science and performance materials. Around 50,000 employees work to further develop technologies that improve and enhance life - from biopharmaceutical therapies to treat cancer or multiple sclerosis, cutting-edge systems for scientific research and production, to liquid crystals for smartphones and LCD televisions. In 2016, Merck generated sales of € 15.0 billion in 66 countries.

Founded in 1668, Merck is the world's oldest pharmaceutical and chemical company. The founding family remains the majority owner of the publicly listed corporate group. Merck, Darmstadt, Germany holds the global rights to the Merck name and brand. The only exceptions are the United States and Canada, where the company operates as EMD Serono, MilliporeSigma and EMD Performance Materials.

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