Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology chooses HP supercomputer to accelerate scientific discovery

New Delhi 12 May 2005The Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology (IGIB), a constituent laboratory of the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research based in New Delhi, India, has chosen a four-teraflop HP supercomputer running the Linux operating system to advance its life sciences computational biology research.


IGIB's supercomputer will be the most powerful HP supercomputer in Asia and will vault IGIB into the ranks of global research institutions such as Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center, Sandia National Laboratory and Los Alamos National Laboratory that have implemented ultra-scaleable, multi-teraflop HP supercomputing systems. A teraflop is a measure of computer speed and equates to a trillion floating-point operations per second.

Conducting research that leads to increased knowledge and the development of life sciences and life systems technologies, IGIB's scientific exploration ranges from genes to proteins and from biotechnology to pharmaceuticals and personalized medicine. The new HP Cluster Platform supercomputer with XC System Software will be used to meet these increasingly complex needs of life sciences research that have advanced beyond genomics.

"HP's Cluster Platform provides a scalable architecture that allows us to complete large, complex simulation experiments such as molecular interactions and dynamics, virtual drug screening, protein folding and so forth much more quickly", stated Dr. Samir Brahmachari, director, IGIB. "This technology, combined with HP's experience and expertise in life sciences, helps IGIB speed access to information, knowledge and new levels of efficiency, which we hope will ultimately culminate in the discovery of new drug targets and predictive medicine for complex disorders with minimum side effects."

The supercomputer, which is expected to deliver four teraflops of performance, is a 288-node HP Cluster Platform 3000 based on HP ProLiant servers with Intel Xeon processors and running Linux with XC System Software. A high-speed InfiniBand 10 gigabit-per-second cluster interconnect is used and HP's XC System Software provides cluster management capability.

"By working with HP to help develop medical informatics opportunities in India, IGIB now can accelerate the pace of innovation while driving greater cost savings and productivity, and responding quickly to new opportunities and change", stated Winston Prather, vice president and general manager, High Performance Computing Division, HP.

The IGIB centre will also have a 24-node high-performance HP ProLiant cluster running Linux and a powerful HP Integrity Superdome server, which will be used for experimental projects. The HP systems are supported by 12 terabytes of HP StorageWorks Enterprise Virtual Array 5000 storage and an HP StorageWorks MSL6060 tape library.

HP technology has played a key role in life science research facilities, such as the Bioinformics Institute in Singapore. "Today's announcement reaffirms HP's position as a leader in life sciences innovation, working together with researchers and product developers to speed access to new discoveries and new treatments", stated Jeffrey D. Miller, worldwide vice president, Health and Education Industries, HP.

The HP Cluster Platform and the XC System Software are part of HP's Unified Cluster Portfolio, announced in November 2004, which helps customers manage and visualize the large volumes of data created by computational biology. The Unified Cluster Portfolio provides a common implementation across multiple operating systems including HP-UX, Microsoft Windows and Linux, and servers based on industry-standard processors such as Intel Xeon, Intel Itanium and AMD Opteron. The open standard platforms allow IGIB to develop complex bioinformatics algorithms that are easy to share and enable collaboration with leading research institutes around the world.

IGIB, a constituent laboratory of the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research, is the only Indian national laboratory with a focus on genomics and integrative biology. IGIB is a key player and participant in several council task force projects. IGIB has set new models in public-private partnerships and works as a hub for interaction between medical institutes and researchers. The focus areas of IGIB include functional genomics, medical and environmental genomics and genome resources and services.

Leslie Versweyveld

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