With this project, Intel and HP intend to accelerate the availability of open source life sciences software applications tuned for Intel Itanium 2 processor-based clusters. As a part of this agreement, Intel has decided to establish a life sciences competency centre within the SIB and its Vital-IT initiative near Lausanne, one of the key life sciences centers in Europe and often called the "Swiss Biotech Valley.
Vital-IT is a newly created group of the SIB, designed to offer high performance computing tools and expertise to fundamental research in life sciences such as genomic statistics and biological databases. The SIB and its partner institutions the EPFL and the Universities of Lausanne, Geneva and Basel that are of highly complementary competencies, fund this initiative. The collaboration will focus on porting codes developed, or used, by the SIB scientists for HP Itanium 2-based systems . Other important life sciences codes will be ported to HP Itanium 2-based servers over the next three years.
All three parties will bring expertise to the co-operation: Intel will deliver its technology in conjunction with intensive training for software developers and customers. HP will source HP Itanium-based production clusters and provide support for the software developers. Vital-IT members will build, develop and maintain a collaborative platform for services and consulting in bio-informatics as part of the life sciences competency centre.
Life sciences software applications ported on Itanium 2 processor-based systems will be made available through open source or commercial channels. Researchers, universities, hospital labs and industry players as well as commercial companies are expected to benefit from the acceleration of information exchange. For example, with technology provided by Intel and HP, health care companies can meet critical needs such as identifying new drugs and health care products more quickly, reducing the time to market for new drugs, increasing supply chain responsiveness and agility, and optimising return on IT investments.
At the centre Intel and HP will help establish HP Itanium 2-based servers as the expert platform for life sciences applications. The centre will engage with other biotech and pharmaceutical firms to make life sciences IT solutions available outside of the academic research community. The partners in the centre will share the results of the collaboration in a variety of external scientific and high-tech forums, events and publications.