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Volunteer your PC to do cancer research!
... to do cancer research

Become a cancer researcher

Join the fight. Join the grid!

What's this about?

Grid.org run a number of distributed computing projects - useful research that YOU can take part in. You simply download a small program from grid.org, which in turn downloads small chunks of data, analyses them, and returns the results to grid.org. It's a free, non-invasive program that works as a screensaver, running idle processing time - it never interrupts or slows your normal PC use. It only runs on Windows at present.

What's this to do with cancer?

Grid.org's main project is run jointly with the Chemistry Department of the University of Oxford, to find potential anti-cancer drugs. The program you run on your computer downloads a model of protein involved in cancer. It then models millions of chemicals, to see if any interact with the target protein.

It returns the results to grid.org, identifying interacting chemicals that might be worth further investigation. If the interaction looks promising, the chemical might eventually enter the early stages of drug trials.

What else do grid.org do?

Other projects include a search for drugs for smallpox - this is co-funded by the US Army. If you join the grid.org project by downloading and running their program, you can choose which projects to run. Contributors are also entered into daily and monthly prize draws.

Opinions vary about how worthwhile the grid.org projects are. Some see the cancer project as the only one worth considering on moral grounds. Others see it as doing work for 'big pharma' and have concerns over intellectual property issues (although there are some assurances on this). Some (including me) are troubled by their Patriot Grid rhetoric. Personally, I choose only to run the Cancer Research project on my PC.

How do I get involved?

This page is here to let you know about the project, and if you like the sound of it, you can take part too. If you do, please consider joining the psyclick.org.uk team - you can do this once you've downloaded the client program and created a member profile.

How well is the team doing?

At present there are 8 members - hopefully we can keep building on that! The current team stats can be seen at the grid.org psyclick team page.