TeamUTP supports scientists to fight COVID-19

On the initiative of students and University authorities and thanks to the commitment of UTP employees, we contribute University equipment to perform distributed computing.

We join the campaign folding@home, which gives the opportunity to support the work of scientists from all around the world who try to understand better coronavirus 2019 (2019-nCoV) to find the cure faster.

Coronavirus infection involves attaching the protein on the surface of the virus to the receptor protein in a lung cell. This viral protein is called spike protein, and the receptor is knowns as ACE2 receptor. A therapeutic antibody is a kind of protein which can block attaching the viral protein to its receptor in a lung cell, thus preventing viral infection. The antibody for another coronavirus SARS-CoV has already been developed, but to create therapeutic antibodies for 2019-nCoV scientists need to better comprehend the structure of the viral protein. What needs to be investigated is not only one shape of the viral protein spike, but all the ways in which the protein moves and folds into alternative shaped, so that we understand how it interacts with the ACE2 receptor.

Computer modelling enables us to achieve this aim. However, it requires a lot of computing power.

To help accomplish the task UTP contributed 30 servers. We encourage you to join the campaign folding@home and sharing the computing power of your equipment for the needs of scientific workers.

Steps to follow:

  • Download and install client software from https://foldingathome.org/start-folding/
  • After launching the client, you will be redirected to https://client.foldingathome.org
  • After clicking “Change identity” you need to set the username and enter the number of our team TeamUTP: 257620 (the password can be left empty, more info at foldingathome.org)
  • Disease type – you need to leave “Any disease”, because COVID-19 research falls into this category

The software is safe, created by Stanford University and uses only the processor/graphic card capacity that is not in use at a given moment. At present many computers are working towards the same goal, trying to research as soon as possible.


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