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DARPA's 'Prophecy' Seeks New Algorithms, Other Approaches to Predict Potential Viral Pathogens

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The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, part of the US Department of Defense, will host two workshops in June to seek participants for “Prophecy,” an in silico viral pathogen surveillance program.

DARPA plans to soon release a Broad Agency Announcement for the program, which aims to develop various methods of predicting viral pathogens well before they emerge in nature.

DARPA said that it it is seeking a range of multidisciplinary technologies for the program, including in vitro platforms to study virus-host interactions, methods for sequencing viral genomes, and algorithms to predict the rate, direction, and phenotypes of mutations in viruses, as well as mutation-prone regions of viral genomes.

Other technologies would prevent pathogen transmission and fight resistant strains of bacteria and viruses, DARPA said.

Workshops to introduce potential participants to the program will be held in Boston on June 24 and in Seattle on June 30. Registration deadlines for the conferences are June 14 and 18, respectively.

More information about the program and workshops is available here.

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