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November 16, 2006

Feature: WISDOM vs. Malaria: (Round Two) Left: Structure of a potential antimalarial drug. Right: A simulation of the drug binding to a protein from the malaria parasite. (Image Credit Vinod KASAM, CNRS/IN2P3) In the often poorly attended fight against neglected diseases, the World-wide In Silico Docking On Malaria initiative is proving to be a strong contender. WISDOM, which launched its second assault on malaria last month, harnesses the power of grid computing to look for drug candidates to treat the disease. “Drug development is a very expensive process,” said Vincent Breton, WISDOM Coordinator from LPC Clermont-Ferrand, “but using grid technology and with the support of our partners in academia and industry, we are able to significantly cut costs for its initial step. By finding good drug candidates for neglected diseases in such a rapid and cost-effective way, we can help to move away from the sad economic situation that made them n