Sign In

Communications of the ACM

ACM TechNews

Computer Idle? Now You Can Donate Its Time to Find a Cure For Major Diseases

View as: Print Mobile App Share:
University of Delaware Professor Michela Taufer

University of Delaware Professor Michela Taufer leads the Docking@Home project.

Credit: Ross Baker / University of Delaware

More than 6,000 volunteers around the world are contributing computing power to the University of Delaware (UD) in an attempt to help biomedical researchers find cures for HIV, Parkinson's, arthritis, and breast cancer. UD's Docking@Home project is using the computing power to model and simulate the combinations of molecules and their binding orientations, or docking, in an effort to discover candidates for new drugs. The computer users are helping UD complete 30,000 docking tasks a day, according to professor and project leader Michela Taufer.

The volunteers are using the open source program Berkeley Open Infrastructure for Network Computing to enable UD to automatically access their computers when idle.

UD also is developing software for ExSciTecH, an immersive volunteer computing system to explore science, technology, and health, which will enable volunteers to "throw" a molecule into a protein with a Nintendo Wii. "Other people do yoga with a Wii," Taufer says. "We are doing science."

From University of Delaware
View Full Article


Abstracts Copyright © 2009 Information Inc., Bethesda, Maryland, USA


No entries found