IBM will use its information technology capabilities to power the Help Defeat Cancer project on World Community Grid for a minimum of three months. The project will give researchers an opportunity to analyse large numbers of cancer tissue microarrays (TMAs) simultaneously allowing multiple experiments to be conducted in shorter periods of time.
“As a result of the Help Defeat Cancer project, World Community Grid makes
it possible to analyse in one day the number of specimens that would take approximately 130 years to complete using a traditional computer,” said Dr.
David J. Foran, lead researcher and professor of pathology and director of the Center for Biomedical Imaging at the UMDNJ-Robert Wood Johnson Medical School and co-director of the Immunohistochemistry shared resources program of The Cancer Institute of New Jersey. “Without World Community Grid, TMAs are processed in individual or small batches that are analysed on standard
Researchers believe the speed and sophistication of World Community Grid
could make it possible to detect and track subtle changes in measurable parameters that could facilitate the discovery of prognosis clues, which are not apparent by human inspection or traditional analysis alone.
Researchers have already created a web-based, robotic prototype to automatically image, analyse, archive and share tissue microarrays. The Help Defeat Cancer project will begin with the analysis of breast cancer TMAs followed by an analysis involving head and neck cancers.
Commenting on the launch of the World Community Grid project, Peter Cardy,
Chief Executive, Macmillan Cancer Support, said: “Cancer affects everyone and the ‘Help Defeat Cancer’ project gives everyone an exciting chance to help advance cancer treatment. At Macmillan we are keen to embrace new innovations, we are running a campaign to encourage people to lobby their MP via the internet. So we will be taking part and encouraging everyone with a computer to help with this critical work. Together we can make a tremendous difference to the lives of people affected by cancer.”
“It is a true testament to the quality of research being conducted at The
Cancer Institute of New Jersey to be part of a project that could quite literally change the way cancer research is performed,” stated Dr. William N. Hait, director of the Cancer Institute of New Jersey and associated dean of Oncology programs and professor of Medicine and Pharmacology at the UMDNJ-Robert Wood Johnson Medical School. Through World Community Grid anyone can donate idle and unused time from their computer by downloading World Community Grid’s free software and registering at www.worldcommunitygrid.org. Fast, easy, safe and secure, more than 200,000 individuals are now volunteering power from more than 360,000 computers to advance cancer research through World Community Grid.
Computers running Windows, Linux or Mac operating systems can all participate in World Community Grid.
Launched in November 2004, World Community Grid is a global humanitarian
effort that applies the unused computing power of individual and business computers to help solve the world’s most difficult and societal problems.
There are more than 650 million PCs in use around the world, each a
potential participant in World Community Grid.
Grid computing is a rapidly
emerging technology than can bring together the collective power of thousands and even millions of individual computers to create a giant “virtual” system with massive computational strength.
Grid technology provides processing power far in excess of the world’s largest supercomputers. The Lance Armstrong Foundation is a World Community Grid partner. “This technology is especially exciting not only because it offers tremendous potential for breakthroughs in cancer research, but also because the Help Defeat Cancer project provides individuals with an easy way to get involved in the fight,” said Mitch Stoller, president and CEO of the Lance Armstrong Foundation. “World Community Grid is a perfect fit for the Lance Armstrong Foundation and our belief that unity is strength. We will support this initiative by installing the software on all Foundation computers, and we encourage everyone with a computer to likewise assist in this critical work. Together, we can make a tremendous difference to people affected by cancer.”
“World Community Grid is a true demonstration of ‘innovation that matters for the world,’” said Stanley S. Litow, president of the IBM International Foundation and vice president of IBM Corporate Community Relations.
“Anyone, anywhere in the world who has a computer can join the battle
The Help Defeat Cancer project is an extension of two other National
Institutes of Health funded projects that Dr. Foran leads. All three projects are collaborative efforts among researchers at The Cancer Institute of New Jersey, the UMDNJ-Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, Rutgers University and the University of Pennsylvania.