Your computer can help Stanford researchers fight the coronavirus. here’s how
If you are feeling helpless in the face of the spread of the novel coronavirus around the world, here is one positive action you can take: Bring scientists closer to a cure in a shorter period of time by donating the time your computer is idle . .
By installing a small program on your home laptop or desktop computer that runs in the background when you are not doing anything else on the computer, you can help experts perform complex calculations to find out. more on the COVID-19[female[feminine sickness.
The application (for Windows and macOS) is called Folding @ home and it was developed by researchers at Stanford University – in fact, this app has been helping disease and drug research for almost 20 years now.
The main objective of this project is protein folding – a biological process that describes how a protein arrange its shape inside a cell. Knowing more about how this process takes place in particular viral proteins may in turn help develop treatments for specific diseases.
In the case of COVID-19, infection occurs in the lungs when something called a spike protein (the red bits in the image above) binds to a receptor called ACE2. Blocking this connection is potentially a way to stop the disease, and computer modeling is a way to determine how to keep the protein and receptor separate.
When it comes to virus, it is important not only to see a snapshot of the shape of a protein, but also to understand how it took that shape: it is the folding of proteins.
Having this knowledge is vital for the development of drugs that could be effective against the new coronavirus, and that’s something we want ASAP. A little free time on your computer might get us a little bit closer to that goal.
“The data you help us generate will be quickly and openly disseminated in an open scientific collaboration between several laboratories around the world, providing researchers with new tools that can open up new opportunities to develop life-saving drugs.” ” says biochemist Greg Bowman, the director of Folding @ home.
It might sound too complex, but don’t panic – the app takes care of all the heavy lifting and you don’t have to do anything once it’s installed. If you would like to contribute research on COVID-19 virus, choose “Any disease” in the interface. You can start and stop the application whenever you want, or pause it and resume its work automatically according to the hours when your computer is not busy.
If you despair of the ominous headlines that are making up the news cycle right now, remember that there is good news even in the midst of the news. pandemic; and that you can help in the efforts to beat it in download the Folding @ home application.
“These calculations are huge and every little bit counts”, said Bowman. “Every simulation you run is like buying a lottery ticket. The more tickets we buy, the better our chances of hitting the jackpot.”