Thursday, September 22, 2011

Online Game Solve the Puzzle of AIDS

Thousands of game players solve puzzles related to AIDS treatment instructions. It only took ten days for them to answer the riddle surrounding the enzyme that has been occupied for years by scientists.Computer games can be played online which is named Foldit.Collaborative game is combined with Tetris and encourage his players to double the amount of protein to achieve complex shapes. The players can use various tools to twist, shake and interactively change the shape of the protein.

"This is the smallest piece of the puzzle help AIDS," said Firas Khatib, an expert in Biochemistry at the University of Washington, who chaired the team of authors of scientific papers Foldit development projects. The results published in the journal Nature Structural & Molecular Biology, and called the players the game, which incidentally is not a biologist, in his credit.This achievement is a milestone in the science community (citizen science), which lists the users of the Internet in large-scale scientific projects that can not be solved easily computer."Humans have the ability to negotiate spatial, a capability that has not mastered the computer very well," Seath said Cooper, University of Washington computer scientist who heads the design and development Foldit. "These games provide a framework that can strengthen the ability of computers and humans," Seath said.For more than a decade, an international team of scientists trying to discover the molecular structure of the enzyme from a virus similar to AIDS dijumlai in resus monkeys. Enzyme, known as retroviral protease, plays an important role in the spread of the virus. If the structure can be uncovered, scientists will be able to design drugs to inhibit the spread of the virus.Approximately 57,000 game players participated Foldit solve challenges. They get points based on the internal energy of a three-dimensional protein structure determined by the laws of Physics.Each time a player who managed to find a more elegant structure that reflects the energy of these molecules, their value will rise. 

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