Team VPE

Artificial Intelligence

Team VPE

Next Generation Virtual Patient Engine for Clinical Translation of Drug Candidates

The goal of team VPE is to develop a versatile computational platform that can predict the efficacy of first- or best-in-class drug candidates in virtual patient populations at an unprecedented accuracy, thereby addressing one of the most critical bottlenecks of the pharmaceutical industry today: a 90% failure rate of new drug candidates during clinical development. In partnership with Sanofi, the VPE team will develop innovative artificial intelligence methods to build the virtual patient platform. As a proof-of-concept, the initial platform will focus on chronic immune-mediated diseases such as atopic dermatitis (AD) and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), where new medication that can address patient heterogeneity is needed.

  • Dr. Thomas Klabunde (Industry Mentor)
    Global Head of Translational Disease Modeling in Data & Data Sciences, Sanofi
  • TBD (Academic Mentor)

You can also find us on GitHub

The research of this team is kindly sponsored by Sanofi.

Our Team Members

Dr. Douglas McCloskey

Group Leader

 Short Bio
  • 2021 – 2022: Chief Scientist, co-founder of AliveX Biotech, Shanghai, China
    • Leading the development of an advanced immune systems biology platform for the identification of biomarkers and drug targets in cancer, autoimmunity, and neurology
  • 2018 – 2021: Group leader, Center for Biosustainability, Technical University of Denmark, Kongens Lyngby, Denmark
    • Leading a group of researchers, including analytical chemists and automation & software engineers, to develop big–omics data generation workflows along with advanced machine learning and biochemical modeling algorithms to learn from this type of data
  • 2017: Postdoc at the Center for Biosustainability, Technical University of Denmark, Kongens Lyngby, Denmark
  • 2010 – 2016: PhD in Bioengineering, University of California, San Diego, USA

Dr. Gurdeep Singh


 Short Bio
  • 2021 – 2023: PostDoc, Russell lab, Heidelberg University, Germany
  • 2017 – 2021: PhD, Russell lab, Heidelberg University, Germany
  • 2015 – 2017: Research Assistant, Heidelberg University, Germany
  • 2014 – 2015: Bachelor’s thesis at Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Belgium &Heidelberg University, Germany
  • 2010 – 2015: Bachelor of Engineering (Electrical and Electronics), BITS Pilani, India

Dr. Lilija Wehling

Computational Biologist

 Short Bio
  • 2021 – 2022: Postdoctoral researcher at the Molecular Hepatopathology Laboratory, Heidelberg University Hospital
  • 2017 – 2021: PhD Student in Systems Biology at BioQuant (Heidelberg University) and the Pathology Institute of the Heidelberg University Hospital
  • 2013 – 2016: Master of Science in Systems Biology, Heidelberg University