IBM at the forefront of race to find COVID-19 cure

Computer giant IBM is leading a team of industry supercomputers to speed up the race for a cure for the coranavirus.
IBM, headquartered in Armonk, is hoping to crush the virus with help from the White House Office of Science and Technology and the Department of Energy. The tech giant launched the COVID-19 High Performance Computing Consortium, which is a team of 16 supercomputers working to streamline a cure.
"You take chemistry problems that you would have tackled with beakers and actually do that digitally in computers," says David Turek, vice president of High Performance and Cognitive Computing at IBM.
The computers are able to fast-track virtual experiments that would normally take months or years or even just hours.
Just recently, IBM's most powerful supercomputer helped researchers at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory and the University of Tennessee narrow down 77 drug compounds out of 8,000 that rendered it unable to infect its host.
On top of developing a vaccine, the supercomputers will also help scientists predict how the coronavirus will evolve. Turek says the same tactic involving IBM supercomputers was used for the H1N1.
"You have to anticipate where the virus will end up  to intercept the next version of the coronavirus six months from now," says Turek.
The hope is to pull the plug on a pandemic that is taking the world by storm.
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