SeaChange Pharmaceuticals Inc. is developing a computational method called similarity ensemble approach to predict small molecule-target interactions that could speed preclinical toxicology testing and help guide the design of novel compounds. The company has shown the technique can detect off-target interactions for existing drugs, and now is hoping to use it to identify repurposing opportunities and to eventually fill its own pipeline with novel molecules.

Similarity ensemble approach (SEA) predicts whether a compound will bind a target by comparing the similarity of the compound's chemical groups to other known ligands of the target. The statistical comparison is based on the premise that drugs of similar structure will bind similar targets.