The project, called [email protected], will be the second large-scale computational biology project to run on the so-called "virtual supercomputer." In the first, announced a year ago, IBM partnered with the Institute for Systems Biology, United Devices, and the
The goal of [email protected] is to design new therapeutic approaches to treat AIDS, which poses a considerable challenge because the HIV virus evolves rapidly to acquire new mutations that confer drug resistance.
"The computational challenges in approaching this problem are the vast number of possible mutations that may occur, and the huge number of possible chemical compounds that might be tested against them," said Arthur Olson of the Department of Molecular Biology at Scripps, in a statement.
Olson said that the World Community Grid project will run "millions upon millions" of docking computations to evaluate potential interactions between compounds and mutant viral proteins.