Die Grippe, Schlangenbisse und das Covid-19 Virus: Jacob Glanville von Netflix’s "Pandemic"

Dominik Probst our consultant managing the role
Posting date: 3/31/2020 10:28 AM


Jacob Glanville aus der neuen Netflix Serie „Pandemic“, berichtet über die wegweisenden Fortschritte, welche er und sein Team bei Distributed Bio in der Welt der biotechnologisch hergestellten Medizin erzielt haben. 


Diese Woche haben wir uns mit Distributed Bio’s CEO Jacob Glanville, Feldführer der fortgeschrittenen rechnerischen Immuntechnik der Biomedizin, zusammengesetzt. Die neue Netflix Serie "Pandemic“ gewährt einen Einblick in die Teams, welche derzeit alles versuchen, um einen globalen Ausbruch der Krankheit zu verhindern, und Glanville, ein sehr renommierter Experte mit einer unglaublichen Erfolgsbilanz. 

Bevor er Distributed Bio gegründet hat, erlangte Jacob Glanville einen PhD der Universität Stanford und arbeitete vier Jahre als leitender Wissenschaftler bei Pfizer. Das Team, geführt von Sarah Ives, Geschäftsführerin Influenza Centivax bei Distributed Bio, entwickelt momentan eine neue universelle Art wegweisender Computertechnologie.

Derzeit verwenden wir rechnerisches Ankoppeln mit hohem Durchsatz, um charakterisieren zu können, wie viele einzigartige Epitope auf der Oberfläche eines viralen Hüllproteins oder eines Pathogenproteins existieren können. Danach verwenden wir diverse Berechnungsmethoden, um die unterschiedlichen Elemente der jeweiligen Arten von viralen Kostenproteinen aus verschieden entwickelten Versionen desselben Pathogens identifizieren zu können. Dieses ist das Kernstück unserer Impfstofftechnologie. Wir verabreichen eine Reihe von sehr unterschiedlichen Varianten zeitgleich mit einer niedrigen Dosis, sodass die gemeinsam genutzten Stellen eine ausreichend hohe Dosis aufweisen, um darauf reagieren zu können."

Diese Technik ermöglicht es Distributed Bio, Impfstoffe für fast jedes Virus schnell in einer sicheren Umgebung herzustellen. Zum Beispiel, aufgrund des jüngsten Ausbruchs des SARS-Coronavirus, arbeitetet Glanville mit dem US-Militär zusammen. Ein Programm der Weltgesundheitsorganisation ermöglicht die Herstellung von Pseudo-Virion-Versionen der Krankheit, welche untersucht werden können, ohne jegliches Risiko darzustellen:

"Sie nehmen die Windpocken und lassen die Außenseite der Windpocken überlaufen, das Kostenprotein der schwerwiegenderen Krankheiten, wie das Coronavirus. Somit verhält es sich nun wie das Coronavirus und sieht äußerlich auch so aus. Es ist wie die knusprige äußere M&M Schale, ähnlich wie das Coronavirus, jedoch innerliche ist es eher wie weichen, klebrigen Schokolade, wie die Windpocken. Es ist nicht sonderlich gefährlich dadurch. Wir bauen eine Beziehung mit dem Militär auf, durch welche wir unsere Antikörperentdeckungsbibliothek in Verbindung mit Pseudovirionpartikeln verwenden können. So können wir schnell Antikörper entdecken, zum Beispiel gegen SARS, ohne SARS Risiko in unser Labor zu bringen.“

Jedoch beschränkt sich ihre Arbeit nicht nur auf die Bekämpfung von Viruserkrankungen. Eines der führenden Projekte von Distributed Bio konzentriert sich auf die Erschaffung eines universellen Gegengifts gegen Schlangenbisse. Die Notwendigkeit eines erschwinglichen Gegengifts mit einfachem Zugang ist hoch, da 80.000 bis 130.000 Menschen jedes Jahr durch Schlangenbisse, die meisten davon in Dritte-Welt-Ländern, getötet werden.

"Es existieren ungefähr 550 Schlangenarten und jede hat 20 bis 70 Proteine. Es hört sich nach einer hohen Anzahl von Proteinen an, welche analysiert werden müssen. Aber wenn ich diese analysiere, werden 10 verschiedene, homologe Gruppen, die alle Schlangenarten teilen, deutlich."

Nachdem herausgefunden wurde, dass ein universeller Ansatz sowohl möglich als auch realisierbar war, wie wurden die benötigten Antikörper entwickelt?

"Unser Team, geleitet von Tim Friede, Geschäftsführer für Herpetologie bei Distributed Bio, Sawsan Youssef, Wissenschaftlicher Geschäftsführer und Raymond Newland, leitender Wissenschaftler, hat einen Mann gefunden, der Schlangen so sehr liebt, das er sich 17 Jahre lang Schlangengift aus aller Welt injiziert hat und dessen Blut haben wir testet. Wir haben Labor- und Berechnungsmethoden verwendet, um eine Reihe von Antikörpern zu identifizieren, welche eine gemeinsame Bestimmungsfaktoren aufweist.“

Bei einem Team, dessen Rollenspektrum sich von Dateningenieuren und Datenwissenschaftlern bis hin zu Bioinformatikspezialisten streckt, ist die Fähigkeit einer Zusammenarbeit besonders wichtig. Wie schafft Glanville solch ein kollaboratives Umfeld?

"Ich versuche die Mitarbeiter so gut wie möglich weiterzubilden. Meiner Meinung nach werden Annahmefehler verringert, indem man die Mitarbeiter stetig weiterbildet. Ich denke der häufigste Grund, weshalb Missverständnisse und Fehler aufkommen, ist, da Mitarbeiter nicht verstehen, was ein anderer Mitarbeiter benötigt und was ihnen von der vorherigen Person weitergegeben wurde. Wenn Mitarbeiter im Stande sind, das Fachwissen ihrer Kollegen mit in die Arbeit einzubeziehen, wird dieses Risiko reduziert."

Glanville ist in Guatemala aufgewachsen und ist sich dadurch der Notwendigkeit leicht verfügbarer und wirksamer Impfstoffe sehr bewusst. Besonders die westliche Welt wird immer vorsichtiger, was Infektionen angeht, aufgrund von der hohen Menge an Fehlinformationen, die sich derzeit im Umlauf befinden. Er versteht jedoch, dass dieses oft mit Vertrauen zusammenhängt.

"Es ist schwierig, der Weltbevölkerung eine epidemiologische Empfehlung zu übermitteln. Oftmals werden keine Impfungen sind besser empfunden. Ich hoffe, dass ein effektiver Impfstoff dieses Fehldenken verschwinden lässt. Leider ist es derzeit noch das Problem einer Grippeimpfung, dass diese nur die Hälfte der Zeit funktioniert. Und das führt dazu, das Menschen anfangen, sich zu beschweren. Ich hoffe, dass bessere Impfstoffe und eine vernünftige Kommunikation dazu beitragen, dass dieses Fehldenken geändert wird."

In Bezug auf unmittelbare Bedenken hinsichtlich der Auswirkungen des Coronavirus wendet er sich erneut der Frage der Zugänglichkeit zu:

"Im Moment mache ich mir mehr Sorgen um Ebola. Es ist ein größeres Ausbruchsproblem und in einem Gebiet, das nur schlecht versorgt wird. Ich denke, China ist recht gut darin, medizinische Probleme zu lösen."

Wenn Sie Ihr Team mit den Besten der Branche ausbauen möchten, wenden Sie sich an unsere Fachberater:

Für unser deutsches Team rufen Sie bitte +49 30 217 899 21 oder +49 30 217 deutschlandinfo@harnham.com.

Wenn Sie auf der Suche nach Ihrer nächsten Herausforderung sind und einem innovativen, weltweit führenden Unternehmen beitreten möchten, haben wir möglicherweise eine Rolle für Sie. Hier finden Sie unsere neusten Jobs.

Pandemic ist jetzt auf Netflix verfügbar. Anbei der Trailer. 

Related blog & news

With over 10 years experience working solely in the Data & Analytics sector our consultants are able to offer detailed insights into the industry.

Visit our Blogs & News portal or check out the related posts below.

The Search For Toilet Paper: A Q&A With The Data Society

We recently spoke Nisha Iyer, Head of Data Science, and Nupur Neti, a Data Scientist from Data Society.  Founded in 2014, Data Society consult and offer tailored Data Science training for businesses and organisations across the US. With an adaptable back-end model, they create training programs that are not only tailored when it comes to content, but also incorporate a company’s own Data to create real-life situations to work with.  However, recently they’ve been looking into another area: toilet paper.  Following mass, ill-informed, stock-piling as countries began to go into lockdown, toilet paper became one of a number of items that were suddenly unavailable. And, with a global pandemic declared, Data Society were one of a number of Data Science organisations who were looking to help anyway they could.  “When this Pandemic hit, we began thinking how could we help?” says Iyer. “There’s a lot of ways Data Scientists could get involved with this but our first thought was about how people were freaking out about toilet paper. That was the base of how we started, as kind of a joke. But then we realised we already had an app in place that could help.” The app in question began life as a project for the World Central Kitchen (WCK), a non-profit who help support communities after natural disasters occur.  With the need to go out and get nutritionally viable supplies upon arriving at a new location, WCK teams needed to know which local grocery stores had the most stock available.  “We were working with World Central Kitchen as a side project. What we built was an app that supposed to help locate resources during disasters. So we already had the base done.” The app in question allows the user to select their location and the products they are after. It then provides information on where you can get each item, and what their nutritional values are, with the aim of improving turnaround time for volunteers.  One of the original Data Scientists, Nupur Neti, explained how they built the platform: “We used a combination of R and Python to build the back-end processing and R Shiny to build the web application. We also included Google APIs that took your location and could find the closest store to you. Then, once you have the product and the sizes, we had an internal ranking algorithm which could rank the products selected based on optimisation, originally were based on nutritional value.”  The team figured that the same technology could help in the current situation, ranking based on stock levels rather than nutritional value. With an updated app, Iyer notes “People won’t have to go miles and stand in lines where they are not socially distancing. They’ll know to visit a local grocery store that does have what they need in stock, that they’ve probably not even thought of before.” However, creating an updated version presented its own challenges. Whereas the WCK app utilised static Data, this version has to rely on real-time Data. Unfortunately this isn’t as easy to come by, as Iyer knows too well:  “When we were building this for the nutrition app we reached out to groceries stores and got some responses for static Data. Now, we know there is real-time Data on stock levels because they’re scanning products in and out. Where is that inventory though? We don’t know.” After putting an article out asking for help finding live Data, crowdsourcing app OurStreets got in touch. They, like Data Society, were looking to help people find groceries in short supply. But, with a robust front and back-end in place, the app already live, and submissions flying in across the States, they were looking for a Data Science team who could make something of their findings.  “We have the opportunity,” says Iyer “to take the conceptual ideas behind our app and work with OurStreets robust framework to create a tool that could be used nationwide.” Before visiting a store, app users select what they are looking for. This allows them to check off what the store has against their expectations, as well as uploading a picture of what is available. They can also report on whether the store is effectively practising social distancing. Neti explains, that this Data holds lots of possibilities for their Data Science team: “Once we take their Data, our system will clean any submitted text using NLP and utilise image recognition on submitted pictures using Deep Learning. This quality Data, paired with the Social Distancing information, will allow us to gain better insights into how and what people are shopping for. We’ll then be able to look at trends, see what people are shopping for and where. Ultimately, it will also allow us to make recommendations as to where people should then go if they are looking for a product.”  In addition to crowdsourced information, Data Society are still keen to get their hands on any real-time Data that supermarkets have to offer. If you know where they could get their hands on it, you can get in touch with their team.  Outside of their current projects, Iyer remains optimistic for the world when it emerges from the current situation: “Things will return to normal. As dark a time as this is, I think it’s going to exemplify why people need to use Artificial Intelligence and Data Science more. If this type of app is publicised during the Coronavirus, maybe more people will understand the power of what Data and Data Science can do and more companies that are slow adaptors will see this and see how it could be helpful to their industry.”   If you want to make the world a better place using Data, we may have a role for you, including a number of remote opportunities. Or, if you’re looking to expand and build out your team with the best minds in Data, get in touch with one of expert consultants who will be able to advise on the best remote and long-term processes. 

Why Businesses Need To Put Fraud Prevention Front And Centre

If Fraudsters are anything, they are opportunists. Once the first new stories about COVID-19 started running, it wasn’t long until they were joined by tales of fraudsters selling face masks and hand sanitiser, asking panicked customers to transfer money and then disappearing without a trace.  And it’s not the first time we’ve seen this. Fraudsters are notoriously wise to periods of heightened sensitivity and uncertainty, often preying on the vulnerable. The 2008 financial crisis saw an increase in email-based phishing scams and a decade’s worth of technological advancements means that Fraud remains a many-headed beast.  Add into the mix a change in working styles and environments, and many businesses are more exposed to potential security breaches than they have been in years. Now, more than ever, companies need to make sure their Data is well protected and secure. THE FIRST LINE OF DEFENCE If you’re part of, or leading, a Fraud Prevention team, there are a number of ways you can support your business and keep on top of the situation. Here are just a few: Increase and update your investigation capacity. This team are the front line of your business’ Fraud defence team, interacting with customers daily and spotting new scams. During an uncertain period, retention and team stability is key. These are the people that understand the day-to-day Fraud challenges you face and will be essential in fighting any future challenges.  Sharing Fraud Prevention knowledge is key. Throughout this crisis, trends will be evolving quickly and working collaboratively across teams, and even other businesses, is the best way to combat this. We consistently hear from Fraud Managers that the key to beating Fraud is to share information and knowledge. Despite this, there is always a hesitation amongst companies to admit that they have been a victim to an attack. Perhaps now is the time to change this. Invest in Machine Learning and real time updates for your Fraud defences. Fraud technology has moved on from script writing in SQL and rule changes. Businesses need a real time reactive response and now is an important time to be embracing new technologies. There are a number AI-driven off the shelf packages available or, for a more bespoke solution, a Fraud Data Scientist can create something internally. Educate your team. It may seem simple, but the Fraud team can play a crucial role in minimising any potential risk from human-error. Educating employees on the risks they may face when working remotely, or what scams they need to look out for, is one of the most effective ways of fighting Fraud.  PREPARING YOUR BUSINESS Success in the fight against Fraud isn’t purely down to the group of individuals that make up the Fraud team. As a business, now is the time to be making decisions that can help you stay ahead of the Fraudsters. Here are some considerations: Consider investing in tech as an your immediate response. Not just to bolster your Fraud defences (although there are plenty of vendors offering AI-based solutions), but also technology for your employees to keep work as normal as possible such a sharing platforms, DevOps technology and video calling networks. One of the best ways to block some of the vulnerability loopholes fraudsters are trying to exploit is to keep working habits as close to normal as possible as you move to a remote solution. Be transparent with your customers. Consumers are being incredibly savvy and noting how businesses respond to the pandemic in a way that could have a big impact when normality returns. But they’re also being more empathetic and are willing to understand difficulties. For example, shopping delivery service Ocado were open and transparent when their system could not initially deal with demand. Having communicated the difficulties, worked through their issues and gone the extra mile to let customers know how they can be supported in this time, the received minimal backlash. There is an understanding that we’re all in this together. Finally, if you have the budget, continue to staff up - particularly in competitive fields such as Data Science. A lot of top Data professionals are currently at home and much more accessible than they have been in a long time. With a number of ways to remotely interview and onboard both permanent and contract staff, if you are able to get begin conversations with them now, you’ll have an edge in what will be a very competitive market come later in the year.  If you’re looking to take your next step in the world of Fraud, we may have a role for you, including a number of remote opportunities.  Or, if you’re looking to expand and build out your Fraud team, get in touch with one of expert consultants who will be able to advise on the best remote and long-term processes. 

RELATED Jobs

Salary

£75000 - £80000 per annum + Benefits

Location

Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire

Description

B2C global company looking to build a brand new data science capability - this role will be the first hire!

Salary

£75000 - £80000 per annum

Location

London

Description

An award winning insure tech start-up changing the landscape of the industry!

Salary

US$180000 - US$200000 per year + Competitive Benefits

Location

San Francisco, California

Description

Harnham is working with a massive late-stage venture that is paving the way for machine learning. Let's talk about deep learning and/or ops research!

recently viewed jobs