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Canadian Hospital Installs $4.2M SGI Supercomputer

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TORONTO--The Bioinform-atics Supercomputing Centre at the Hospital for Sick Children here has installed a Silicon Graphics Origin 2000 supercomputer to assist in the analysis of genetic data. Jamie Cuticchia, head of the hospital's bioinformatics program, said the machine, with 64 MIPS processors and 16 gigabytes of memory, will be used initially for research in two key areas: searching for similarities in gene sequences and developing three-dimensional models of human proteins, the products of genes.

The bioinformatics center has said it is "in a stage of rapid growth and expansion," and expects shortly to acquire many new bioinformatics-related services and programs. In November, the center launched Canada's only mirror site of the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine's Genome Database, known as the GDB, and said it was considering taking over the site once the school discontinues maintenance due to funding cuts.

Funding from an anonymous donor and a $1.4 million investment from Silicon Graphics Canada supported installation of the new supercomputer at the hospital.

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