Researchers from Swiss science and technology university ETH Zurich are working with high-performance cloud computing company CloudBroker to develop new antibiotics to fight disease.
The Institute of Molecular Systems Biology researchers used almost 250,000 computing hours on 1,000 parallel CPUs to conduct their research analysing the structure of specific proteins found in streptococcus bacteria, the cause of strep throat in humans.
As a result, the researchers were able to better study the function of the pathogens, successfully identifying some 250 potential "virulence factors" — secreted molecules that multiply. In the process, they created 2.3 million three-dimensional models with 30,000 background data packets. The researchers used the open-source software Rosetta, which predicts and designs protein structures, protein folding mechanisms and protein-protein interactions.
For more on this ZDNet UK-selected story, see Engineering better antibiotics, with help from the cloud on SmartPlanet.
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