Speeding up Alzheimer’s Research by Superfast Data Processing

Bonn/Germany - Las Vegas/Nevada, June 9, 2017. At the “Discover Conference” in Vegas scientists of the German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases (DZNE) presented first results of a collaboration with Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE).

Beating Alzheimer’s and other neurodegenerative diseases is one of the grand challenges of our time. New approaches for prevention and therapy might arise from the analysis of genomic, brain imaging and other forms of big data. This quest requires massive computer power. Therefore, the DZNE and HPE recently signed an agreement to explore the potentials of the “Memory-Driven Computing” architecture for scientific and medical research. For this, computers at HPE which rely on this novel architecture developed within HPE’s research program “The Machine” will be employed alongside on-premises development systems at the DZNE.

At HPE’s Discover conference in Las Vegas, Prof. Pierluigi Nicotera, Chairman of the DZNE’s Executive Board, and DZNE scientist Prof. Joachim Schultze reported first results of this cooperation. “Actually we started just two weeks ago, but the results are quite encouraging,” Nicotera said. “So far, we have been able to speed up analysis of genomic data up to nine-times. In view of this, we are hopeful that this collaboration will open up new avenues of research. And ultimately help us to find new ways of dealing with Alzheimer’s and other neurodegenerative diseases.”

DZNE scientist Joachim Schultze adds that one day after the key note in Vegas new results show that processes, that were believed to be optimised and take about 25 minutes to complete, are now done in 36 seconds.

Hartmut Schultze who leads the cooperation with DZNE at Hewlett Packard Enterprise said: “During our first test calculations we discovered a huge potential to further accelerate the analysis. We look forward to continue this work with DZNE and are proud to contribute to such an important area of research.”

“Thanks to the cooperation with Hartmut Schultze the collaboration between DZNE and HPE is a reality”, Nicotera said.

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