The most powerful IBM Summit supercomputer has joined fight against the coronavirus.
Housed in United States Department of Energy (ORNL) Oak Ridge National Laboratory, (after being built in IBM's lab), Summit's supercomputer has the key task of resolving difficult issues in its fields. energy, human health and artificial intelligence.
Coronavirus disease forced them researchers to use the supercomputer to study the virus. Thanks to its systems, the researchers were able to perform simulations with an “unprecedented speed". The results appeared within one to two days. If "conventional" computing was used systems it could take months.
Through this work, the researchers identified 77 compounds of low molecular weight drugs that, according to ORNL, will be further studied in the treatment of SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, responsible for the COVID-19 disease epidemic. .
The supercomputer has been able to simulate over 8.000 compounds for detection those most likely associated with the coronavirus spike protein, making it incapable of infecting host cells.
ORNL said the idea behind this is to study the entry point of the coronavirus into the host cell.
His researcher University of Tennessee (UT) / ORNL CMB, Micholas Smith, created a model of the "spike protein" called S-protein, based on early studies of the structure.
He used a simulation code to perform molecular dynamics simulations that analyze the movements of atoms and particles in the protein.
Smith was able to simulate different compounds adhering to the S-protein spike of the coronavirus to see if any of them could prevent the protein from sticking to human cells.
"Our results do not mean we have found a cure for Wuhan's coronary heart disease," said Jeremy Smith, president of the University of Tennessee and director of the Molecular Biophysics Center.
"We believe, however, that our computational findings will help future studies and provide a framework for researchers to further investigate these compounds. Only then will we know if any of them have the characteristics needed to mitigate coronavirus. "
Summit's supercomputer provided researchers with an amazing data processing capability 4,608 IBM Power Systems AC922 server nodes, equipped with two IBM POWER9 CPUs and six Nvidia Tensorcore V100 GPUs, delivering top performance 200 petaflops.
Summit has also been used to help understand the origin of the universe, to show how humans could land on Mars and more.
In addition to utilizing Summit, Rometty said the unit IBM's Watson Health works directly with organizations worldwide to better understand the nature of the COVID-19 coronavirus.
“IBM's clinical development system is available - free of charge - to national health services to reduce the time and cost of clinical trials by providing data and analyzes by Appliances who have access at Internet"He said.