Dr. John Trent
Dataseam CEO Brian Gupton and UofL Brown Cancer Center Deputy Director, Dr. John Trent, discuss Dataseam’s value providing computers to school classrooms across Kentucky while delivering computer power to cancer researchers at UofL. The story is the first feature segment on UofL Today with Mark Hebert radio show.
Listen to the story: UofL Today with Mark Hebert: Dataseam/Cancer Research.
Originally aired on FM 93.9, March 12, 2018.
In the first 70 days of the calendar year, the DataseamGrid completed over 1,000 years of critical cancer research. Since January 1, 2017 researchers at the James Graham Brown Cancer Center have used this massive Kentucky cloud-based computing system to investigate tumor suppressor pathways, target specific genes and identify existing drugs that may be used to fight different cancers.
This unique computing system provides 40,000 Gigahertz of processing power from desktop computers sitting in 38 school systems across the state. It extracts the maximum amount of computing power from every system around the clock, not only during evenings and weekends, but also between classes and other low use periods.
As one of the largest distributed computing systems in the world, it supplies twice the raw processing power of dedicated super computing at the University of Kentucky and University of Louisville combined. If you purchased that much power from traditional cloud-based services, the state would have paid nearly $500,000 since early January.
Teams of Kentucky-based researchers have been looking at over 130 targets against their database of 25 million potential compounds to identify potential drugs. They have also extended their search efforts to scan national databases of thousands of drugs including FDA approved drugs, to determine if some of those drugs might be useful against other types of cancers and different treatment programs.
The potential to repurpose existing medicines or substances may help get the benefits to people more quickly. It is an area of focus for the NIH (National Institutes of Health) and University of Louisville cancer research teams are concentrating efforts in this area.
Supported and maintained across 38 school districts from Pikeville and Martin County in the east to Union and Crittenden Counties in the west, these 12,000 plus school computers take on these research requests that might consist of 50,000 individual tasks, with each task taking many hours to complete. If local equipment, network or power conditions put a school or school system offline for any time, the system dynamically redirects tasks to other available computers so the important research marches on 24-hours a day, seven days a week.
Dataseam developed and manages the DataseamGrid in collaboration with 38 Kentucky school districts. Dataseam also works with local school districts, universities and academies to promote STEM educated workforce, particularly in bio-medical research and aerospace industries. Over 7,000 teachers and 90 technicians participate in training and industry-based certification programs as part of this effort.
 Computing power based on number of intel cores as documented at https://www.rc.uky.edu/high-performance-computing/hpc-hardware/ and http://louisville.edu/it/departments/research/cyberinfrastructure
 Calculated using http://calculator.s3.amazonaws.com