Let your computer help find a vaccine

Folding@home, the largest networked supercomputing project in the world, has joined the search to stop coronavirus. Gregory R. Bowman, an associate professor of biochemistry & molecular biophysics, heads the program. His team is seeking to understand the structure of COVID-19’s “spike protein,” which is how the virus infects cells. Bowman explains in this Financial Times video how research could reveal vulnerabilities in the protein. He also explains how anyone can get involved.

Folding@home relies on the power of tens of thousands of home computers to perform the complex calculations required to simulate protein dynamics. Volunteers from all over the world can install a software program that runs those calculations when a computer otherwise would sit idle. Since Folding@home announced its new coronavirus efforts, the number of volunteers has skyrocketed to more than a million “folders.”