China Speeds up Decoding Life Mystery

With two sets of Shuguang (Dawning) 3000 super-servers settled in the Human Genome Center (HGC) under the Chinese Academy of Sciences (Beijing Huada Genomics Institute), the Chinese scientists have once again realized a "double strong cooperation" in the fields of biology and information science. With the "two-wins" achieved, they've pushed the study on high performance computer and biological information science ahead onto a new high level.

As learnt from the Chinese Academy of Science the new-born Shuguang 3000 superserver has set a precedent in the history of Chinese high performance computers. Irrespective of its striking price exceeding 10 million yuan, it were "reserved" by Beijing Huada Genomics Institute in the early days of its development. And not long afterwards, two Shuguang 3000 super-servers with a peak floating speed of 403.2 billion times per second were installed respectively in Beijing and Hangzhou Huada Genomics Institutes. And accordingly "Huada Genomics Institute" has become the largest user of Shuguang 3000 super-server.

The development of modern science has pushed forward with every passing day the combination of biotechnology with information technology in which super computers play particularly an indispensable role in handling the astronomical amount of data for sequencing the genomes of the Human Genome Program. By means and ways of mathematics, computer science and biological science scientists have now to a certain extent clarified and defined the biological significance implied in the large amount of genome data. A new subject in science-bioinformationology is on the rise with the time and tide.

As a major unit assigned to sequence 1 percent of the human genome, Beijing Huada Genomics Institute has joined forces in work with the Chinese Academy of Sciences since last year. After the Shuguang (Dawning) 2000 super-server with a peak floating speed of 111.1 billion times per second settled in Huada for over half a year, the institute has set up a biological information platform, infused with the ability to handle astronomical amount of genome data. Following the completion in mapping out 1 percent of the human genome, Huada is now to take up the genome program of super hybrid rice and domestic pigs, etc, which will be more arduous and greater in workload. All these claim a stronger support in calculation and biological information processing.

To cater to the needs of scientific development, the Chinese Academy of Sciences quickened its paces in developing homemade super-server and succeeded in turning out the Shuguang (Dawning) 3000 in less than one year.

"Our further cooperation will guarantee a long-term, rapid and safe development in genetic and biological information science", said Ren Wangjian, executive director of Beijing Genomics Institute. "We will expedite the informationization of biological resources and carry out on a large scale the exploitation in biological information".

(People’s Daily 03/28/2001)

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