World AIDS Day 2006

You can help fight HIV and AIDS by using your computer’s idle time

Did you know there are approximately forty million people living with AIDS worldwide, and that number is increasing every day? December 1 is World AIDS Day — an opportunity for everyone to unite in the fight against HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus) and AIDS.

World Aids Day 2006 IBM has made it very easy for you, your family and your clients to be part of the solution by donating your computer’s idle time to the World Community Grid’s FightAIDS@Home project. It’s simple. Once you install the free software, you become part of the community. When idle, your computer will request data on a specific project from World Community Grid’s server. It will then perform computations on this data, send the results back to the server, and ask the server for a new piece of work. Each computation that your computer performs provides scientists with critical information that accelerates the pace of research!

In the case of the FightAIDS@Home project, the grid is analyzing drug molecules that stop AIDS from developing. FightAIDS@Home has just completed 100 years worth of analysis in less than 10 months! The 2 quadrillion calculations in the study were made possible by 190,000 individuals in 185 countries, who participated as World Community Grid members. Started by IBM and United Devices in November 2004, World Community Grid is also running cancer and human proteome folding research projects.

Through FightAIDS@Home, The Scripps Research Institute is identifying drugs that have the right shape and chemical characteristics to block HIV protease. This stops the virus from maturing and helps prevent the onset of AIDS. During Phase 1, the World Community Grid virtually screened approximately 2,000 compounds in the National Cancer Institute’s Diversity Set against 270 wild-type and mutant HIV proteases. Phase 2, begun this June, is screening 230,000 compounds — the entire NCI database — against wild-type HIV protease. Four successful compounds identified in Phase 1 are already being analyzed by synthetic chemists to determine their potential as new drugs to stop HIV.

You can make a difference in the fight against AIDS. Donate your idle computer time today, and while you’re at it, pass the message on. The more computers connected to the grid, means more analysis of the HIV protease — and the faster a cure can be found.

Carlos Vargas


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