Mimesis

Mimesis

We predicti Human Health, in Silico.

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OMS World Patient Safety Day and Mimesis Srl: an interview. 17 September marks the 5th World Patient Safety Day (WPSD), promoted by the World Health Organization (WHO) whose theme this year will be ‘Safe Medication’...

About Us

Founding Members: Professor Francesco Pappalardo is Associate Professor of Informatics at the Department of Pharmaceutical and Health Sciences at the University of Catania, where he also holds the position of Deputy Director of the Department....

Mimesis joins SMAU 2022

Mimesis Srl, a Sicilian start-up, spin-off of the University of Catania, is among the companies selected to join the SMAU event in Milan on October... Read More "Mimesis joins SMAU 2022"

Blog

OMS World Patient Safety Day and Mimesis Srl: an interview.

17 September marks the 5th World Patient Safety Day (WPSD), promoted by the World Health Organization (WHO) whose theme this year will be ‘Safe Medication’ related to the global campaign ‘Medication without Harm’.

The aim of this day is to raise awareness of the impact that medication errors and unsafe practices can have on the patient, emphasizing the need for urgent action to improve the safety of the medication pathway and, consequently, the safety of the patient himself.

It is in this context that Mimesis SRL acts, an innovative start-up in the medical-scientific field born in 2020 as a spin-off of the University of Catania. The work of Mimesis is fundamentally based on reproducing phenomena of a structural-chemical-biological nature through In Silico technology, i.e. through the use of computational models capable of almost completely reproducing the general behaviour of the immune system, and simulating its responses both in the presence of viruses, bacteria, tumors and autoimmune diseases, and in the presence of pharmacological therapies.

It is therefore clear that, thanks to this approach, which does not involve the use of humans in the experimental stages of research, patient safety is almost completely guaranteed.

We met Professor Francesco Pappalardo and Dr Giulia Russo, founders of the company, to discuss the issue of patient safety applied to their research.

Professor Francesco Pappalardo is Associate Professor of Informatics at the Department of Pharmaceutical and Health Sciences at the University of Catania, where he also holds the position of Deputy Director of the Department. In addition, since 2016, he is Visiting Professor at the Boston University and Health Informatics Research Lab, Computer Science Department and Adjunct Professor at University of Griffith, Australia.

Dr Giulia Russo gained her PhD in “Basic and Applied Biomedical Sciences” in 2018 with a special interest in computational and systems biology topics. From 2018 to 2020 she was a Research Fellow at the Department of Pharmaceutical and Health Sciences, University of Catania. Since 2020 she has been a Research Fellow in Computer Science at the same Department. She also teaches Computer Science at the CdLM in Pharmacy of the University of Catania and she is Adjunct Research Fellow at University of Griffith, Australia.

Good morning to you. Before we begin, can you briefly introduce yourselves?

F-Good morning, I am Francesco Pappalardo. I am an Associate Professor at the Department of Pharmaceutical and Health Sciences at the University of Catania, where I also hold the position of Deputy Director of the Department. I am also Adjunct Professor at Boston University in the United States and Griffith University in Australia.

G-Hello everyone. My name is Giulia Russo. I teach Computer Science at the CdLM in Pharmacy of the University of Catania and I am a Chief Research Officer at MIMESIS. I am also holding a position of Adjunct Research Fellow at University of Griffith, Australia.

What does your research consist of and what diseases do you focus on?

Our research consists of the development and implementation of an in silico platform, the Universal Immune System Simulator (UISS), which simulates the immune system in order to observe the course of specific diseases and their treatments, and to predict the immune response towards a pathogen and/or a therapy.

We are mainly focused on infectious disease, such as tuberculosis, COVID-19, or on tumors, such as mammary carcinoma, or on autoimmune disease, such as multiple sclerosis. For the latter we are developing a M&S platform able to predict the outcome of a disease: using a digital patient, created from a set of features, the M&S platform can represent the real one and, therefore, it can modify the therapy selecting the one that has the best therapeutic effect. M&S is also going to speed up the drug discovery pipeline and it can provide strong and formal tools to assess credibility and uncertainty quantification of M&S applied to healthcare.

What does MIMESIS offer?

MIMESIS is an innovative startup and spin-off of the University of Catania that applies computational models to the pharmaceutical/nutraceutical sector, allowing the simulation of phenomena of a structural-chemical-biological nature.Mimesis offers the first generation of “In Silico” solutions to the biomedical industry and pharmaceutical companies to reduce time and costs in the research and development process of medicinal products.

What are the results obtained so far?And the benefits for the patients?

Thanks to the In Silico technology we are able to predict the best treatment regimen for the patient profile of interest. We have drastically reduced the number of in vivo experiments, which means significant cost savings; we are also able to provide a better prediction of the toxicity profile of medical products, which means almost completely avoiding severe side effects. These technologies and methodologies can make ad-personam therapies available for everyone, despite differences in income, social status, living country, race, and cultural origins.

Can we therefore say that in silico technology will be able to predict the effects of long-term therapy on patients with serious diseases?

Modelling and simulation can speed up the development of new therapies and, at the same time, predict, almost completely, their outcomes on a patient: we believe, therefore, that the effects of a therapy can be predicted even in the long term.

One last question: what future do you foresee for in silico research?

Today, the healthcare industry faces many challenges: one of the most important is the pandemic emergency, so the need to adopt these new technologies is increasing. We believe that in silico technology can accelerate and optimize the pharmaceutical device discovery process and, consequently, lower production costs. Furthermore, the use of virtual patients has made it possible to almost completely eliminate the use of humans, thus demonstrating that it cares about ethics. We are convinced that, in this extraordinary multidisciplinary context in which in silico medicine operates, everything can be powerful and possible!

Thank you.

Italian Version

Il 17 settembre ricorre la V° giornata internazionale sulla sicurezza dei pazienti (WPSD), promossa dall’Organizzazione Mondiale della Sanità (OMS) il cui tema di quest’anno sarà dedicato alla “La sicurezza di terapia” correlata alla campagna globale “Medication without Harm”.

L’obiettivo di questa giornata è quello di aumentare la consapevolezza sull’impatto che possono avere errori terapeutici e pratiche non sicure per il paziente, sottolineando la necessità di un’azione urgente per migliorare la sicurezza del percorso del farmaco e, di conseguenza, anche la sicurezza del paziente stesso.

In questo contesto si inserisce Mimesis SRL, start-up innovativa nel campo medico scientifico, nata nel 2020 come spin-off dell’Università di Catania. Il lavoro di Mimesis si basa fondamentalmente nel riprodurre fenomeni di natura strutturale-chimico-biologica attraverso la tecnologia In Silico, ovvero attraverso l’utilizzo di modelli computazionali capaci di riprodurre quasi completamente il comportamento generale del sistema immunitario, e di simularne le risposte sia in presenza di virus, batteri, tumori e malattie autoimmuni, sia in presenza di terapie farmacologiche.

Risulta evidente, quindi, come, grazie a questo approccio che non prevede l’utilizzo di cavie umane nelle fasi sperimentali della ricerca, la sicurezza del paziente sia quasi del tutto garantita.

Abbiamo incontrato il professore Francesco Pappalardo e la Dott.ssa Giulia Russo, soci fondatori dell’azienda, per approfondire il tema della sicurezza del paziente applicato alla loro ricerca.

Francesco Pappalardo è professore associato di Informatica presso il Dipartimento di Scienze del Farmaco e della Salute dell’ Università degli Studi di Catania, dove ricopre anche l’incarico di Vice direttore di Dipartimento. Inoltre, dal 2016, è Visitor Professor presso la Boston University and Health Informatics Research Lab, Computer Science Department ed anche Adjunct Professor presso la Griffith University, Australia.

La dottoressa Giulia Russo ha conseguito nel 2018 il titolo di Dottore di Ricerca in “Basic and Applied Biomedical Sciences” con particolare interesse alle tematiche computazionali e di biologia sistemica. Dal 2018 al 2020 è stata assegnista di ricerca presso il Dipartimento di Scienze del Farmaco e della Salute dell’Università degli Studi di Catania. Dal 2020 è Ricercatore in Informatica presso il medesimo Dipartimento. È inoltre titolare dell’insegnamento di Informatica presso il CdLM in Farmacia dell’Università degli Studi di Catania ed anche Adjunct Research Fellow presso la Griffith University, Australia.

Buongiorno a Voi. Prima di iniziare, potete presentarvi brevemente?

F-Buongiorno, sono Francesco Pappalardo. Sono professore associato presso il Dipartimento di Scienze del Farmaco dell’Università di Catania, dove ricopro anche il ruolo di Vice direttore di dipartimento. Inoltre sono Adjunct professor alla Boston University negli Stati Uniti e alla Griffith University in Australia.

G-Ciao a tutti. Sono Giulia Russo. Insegno Informatica presso il CdLM in Farmacia dell’Università di Catania e sono Chief Research Officer presso MIMESIS. Ricopro anche il ruolo di Adjunct Research Fellow presso l’Università di Griffith, in Australia.

In cosa consiste la vostra ricerca e quali sono le malattie da voi prese in oggetto?

La nostra ricerca consiste nello sviluppo e nell’implementazione di una piattaforma in Silico, l’ Universal Immune System Simulator (UISS), che simula il sistema immunitario, in modo da osservare l’andamento di specifiche malattie e dei relativi trattamenti e prevedere la risposta immunitaria verso un patogeno e/o verso una terapia.

Ci occupiamo principalmente di malattie infettive, come la tubercolosi, COVID-19, o di tumori, come il carcinoma mammario, o di malattie autoimmuni, come la sclerosi multipla. Per quest’ultima stiamo sviluppando una piattaforma di M&S in grado di prevedere l’esito della malattia: utilizzando un paziente virtuale, la piattaforma di M&S può rappresentare quello reale e, quindi, modificarne la terapia selezionando quella che ha il miglior effetto. La M&S accelera anche la velocità di sviluppo dei trattamenti favorendone, quindi, una più rapida messa in commercio.

Cosa offre MIMESIS?

MIMESIS è una startup innovativa e spin-off dell’Università di Catania che applica modelli computazionali al settore farmaceutico/nutraceutico, consentendo la simulazione di fenomeni di natura strutturale-chimica-biologica.Mimesis offre la prima generazione di soluzioni “In Silico” all’industria biomedica e alle aziende farmaceutiche per ridurre tempi e costi nel processo di ricerca e sviluppo di prodotti medicinali.

Quali sono i risultati ottenuti finora?Quali sono i benefici per il paziente?

Grazie alla tecnologia In Silico siamo in grado di prevedere il miglior regime terapeutico per il profilo del paziente di interesse. Abbiamo ridotto drasticamente il numero di esperimenti in vivo, il che significa un notevole risparmio di costi; siamo anche in grado di fornire una migliore previsione del profilo di tossicità dei dispositivi medici, il che significa evitare quasi completamente gravi effetti collaterali. Queste tecnologie e metodologie possono rendere le terapie ad-personam disponibili per tutti, nonostante le differenze di reddito, stato sociale, paese di residenza, razza e origini culturali.

Possiamo quindi affermare che, la tecnologia in Silico, sarà in grado di prevedere gli effetti di una terapia a lungo termine su pazienti con gravi patologie?

La modellazione e la simulazione possono accelerare i tempi per lo sviluppo delle nuove terapie e, contemporaneamente, predirne, quasi completamente, gli esiti su un paziente: crediamo, quindi, che si possano prevedere gli effetti di una terapia anche a lungo termine.

Un’ultima domanda: che futuro prevedete per la ricerca in Silico?

Oggi l’industria sanitaria si trova ad affrontare molte sfide: una delle più importanti riguarda l’emergenza pandemica, per cui la necessità di adottare queste nuove tecnologie è in aumento. Crediamo che la tecnologia in Silico, possa accelerare e ottimizzare il processo di scoperta dei dispositivi farmaceutici e, di conseguenza, abbattere i costi di produzione. Inoltre, l’utilizzo di pazienti virtuali, ha reso possibile la quasi completa eliminazione dell’uso di cavie umane, dimostrando, quindi, di avere a cuore l’etica. Siamo convinti che, in questo straordinario contesto multidisciplinare in cui agisce la medicina in Silico, tutto può essere potente e possibile!

Grazie

Mimesis joins SMAU 2022

Mimesis Srl, a Sicilian start-up, spin-off of the University of Catania, is... Read More "Mimesis joins SMAU 2022"

About Us

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Founding Members:

Professor Francesco Pappalardo is Associate Professor of Informatics at the Department of Pharmaceutical and Health Sciences at the University of Catania, where he also holds the position of Deputy Director of the Department. In addition, since 2016, he is Visiting Professor at the Boston University and Health Informatics Research Lab, Computer Science Department and Adjunct Professor at University of Griffith, Australia.

Dr Giulia Russo gained her PhD in “Basic and Applied Biomedical Sciences” in 2018 with a special interest in computational and systems biology topics. From 2018 to 2020 she was a Research Fellow at the Department of Pharmaceutical and Health Sciences, University of Catania. Since 2020 she has been a Research Fellow in Computer Science at the same Department. She  also teaches Computer Science at the CdLM in Pharmacy of the University of Catania and she is Adjunct Research Fellow at University of Griffith, Australia.

Partners

Professor Marco Viceconti is Full Professor of Computational Biomechanics in the Department of Industrial Engineering, University of Bologna. Expert in musculoskeletal biomechanics and customised computer models. Founder and director for seven years of the prestigious Insigneo in silico medicine research institute. He has extensive experience in the regulatory field. He founded and directed the VPH Institute for Integrative Biomedical Research for several years. Member of the Board of Directors of the Avicenna Alliance.

Professor Santo Motta is Professor of Physics-Mathematics at the University of Catania, in retirement since 2016. He has worked in many research fields: from Astrophysics and Relativistic Cosmology to BioMathematics and BioInformatics.

Dr. Filippo Caraci: pharmacologist, researcher at the Department of Pharmaceutical and Health Sciences, University of Catania and Visitor Professor at the University of Bordeaux (2016-2017). He is Scientific Responsible and Coordinator of Research Projects in the area of Neuropsychopharmacology at the IRCSS Oasi Maria SS of Troina on behalf of the Universitỳ of Catania. He deals with multidisciplinary aspects of preclinical and clinical pharmacology with particular reference to translational pharmacology in order to build preclinical research models in which drug efficacy is transferable with greater probability of success in the clinic.

Marzio Pennisi is a PhD in “Mathematics for Technology”. Since 2020 he has been a researcher at the Department of Science and Technological Innovation, University of Eastern Piedmont. WP leader within the STriTuVaD project. He deals with computational techniques and models in the field of biomedicine. He is also involved in the development of stochastic optimisation techniques based on meta-heuristic methodologies with applications in the biomedical field.

Staff

Matteo Balestri is the Head of Project Management, Sales and Marketing Department.

Martina Di Salvatore owns a Master Degree in languages. Specialized in international cooperation, she worked for years as an international advisor for some of the most prestigious American universities. since 2022 she has been the Head of Communication and P.R. at Mimesis.

In evidenza

Mimesis joins SMAU 2022

Mimesis Srl, a Sicilian start-up, spin-off of the University of Catania, is among the companies selected to join the SMAU event in Milan on October 11 and 12.
The roadshow, repeated every year since 1964, brings together the best Italian and international start-ups that stand out for innovation and sustainability.
Mimesis thus completes the shortlist of participating companies in the Health and Wellness sector.
The objective of Mimesis is to propose in silico solutions: through the use of a computational simulator, it is able to reproduce almost completely the reaction of the immune system in the presence not only of viruses, bacteria and tumours, but also of pharmacological treatments.
Professor Francesco Pappalardo and Dr Giulia Russo, founding partners of Mimesis, say they are pleased with this participation: “We are very happy to have the opportunity to take part in this event: it is an excellent showcase, which will allow Mimesis to be known not only in Italy, but also in the rest of the world.”
Here, the details of the event: https://www.smau.it/?gclid=CjwKCAjwm8WZBhBUEiwA178UnK0V36EojQBaTe5VeYqsOw1JT7FxZ9LfrJFy_EJuJLItEL1476881hoCUxoQAvD_BwE

Mimesis Srl

MIMESIS is an innovative startup and SpinOff of the University of Catania that applies computational models to the pharmaceutical/nutraceutical sector, allowing the simulation of phenomena of a structural-chemical-biological nature.

Mimesis offers the first generation of “In Silico” solutions to the biomedical industry and pharmaceutical companies to reduce time and costs in the research and development process of medicinal products.

Mimesis cares about ethics since the solutions adopted do not require the use of humans, leading to a potential reduction of the number of patients who take part in clinical studies.

The estimated cost required for the approval of a new drug by regulatory agencies (EMA and FDA) varies between 2 and 3 billion dollars and it takes at least 10 years before the drug arrives on the market.

Our Mission

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SPEEDING UP YOUR R&D PROCESS!

SPEED UP OF THE DRUG DISCOVERY PROCESS

Strong reduction of the time required to pass from a preclinical validation to a phase I clinical trial, predicting at the same time the outcome of the phase II clinical trials.

OPTIMIZATION OF CLINICAL STUDIES

Drastic reduction of the number of in vivo experiments, which means significant costs saving.

IMPROVEMENT OF THE DESIGN OF EXISTING EXPERIMENTS

Maximization of the chances of success of in vivo / in vitro experiments and reduction of costs and times for clinical validation.

MODELING NEW EXPERIMENTAL STUDIES

Development of new experimental settings, providing a better prediction of the toxicity profile of medical products.

AI ROSSO faccia con codice binario

Our Customers

PHARMACEUTICAL AND NUTRACEUTICAL COMPANIES

Use of simulations to safely model and test new medicinal / nutraceutical products on virtual patients.

RESEARCHERS

Digitalization, integration and analysis of multidisciplinary data.

CLINICIANS

Predict the best treatment regimen for the patient profile of interest.

PUBLIC AND PRIVATE HEALTH

Sharing data, generating models and simulations, analyzing and interpreting results with your team.