Background: Structure-constrained molecular generation is a promising approach to drug discovery. The goal of structure-constrained molecular generation is to produce a novel molecule that is similar to a given source molecule (e.g. hit molecules) but has enhanced chemical properties (for lead optimization). Many structure-constrained molecular generation models with superior performance in improving chemical properties have been proposed; however, they still have difficulty producing many novel molecules that satisfy both the high structural similarities to each source molecule and improved molecular properties. Methods: We propose a structure-constrained molecular generation model that utilizes contractive and margin loss terms to simultaneously achieve property improvement and high structural similarity. The proposed model has two training phases; a generator first learns molecular representation vectors using metric learning with contractive and margin losses and then explores optimized molecular structure for target property improvement via reinforcement learning. Results: We demonstrate the superiority of our proposed method by comparing it with various state-of-the-art baselines and through ablation studies. Furthermore, we demonstrate the use of our method in drug discovery using an example of sorafenib-like molecular generation in patients with drug resistance.
Bibliographical notePublisher Copyright:
© 2023, The Author(s).
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Computer Science Applications
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
- Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design
- Library and Information Sciences