Here’s how to use your PC to help fight coronavirus

coronavirus (Image credit: Folding@Home / Alissa Eckert, MS; Dan Higgins, MAM)

If you’re worried about the spread of coronavirus, you're not alone, but rather than merely fret, there is something positive you can do to help fight the virus: contributing your PC’s processing power to the search for a way to defeat the threat.

Folding@Home is an initiative from Stanford University which is asking for your spare computer resources to help researchers better understand coronavirus, and how it infects – and thus how to potentially defeat it.

This is a similar usage of collective computing resources as seen in the likes of SETI@Home, a project that you’ve probably heard of, which is part of the search for extraterrestrial life (incidentally, SETI@Home is being wound up at the end of March, so this fresh anti-coronavirus initiative looks like a great alternative use of your PC’s resources).

Therapeutic antibody

The researchers behind Folding@Home explain that they are looking at how the infection actually occurs in the lungs, and methods of blocking the way in which coronavirus binds itself to a receptor protein on a lung cell.

The wider goal is to develop a therapeutic antibody which can stop the virus from binding and infecting, similar to what was achieved with SARS coronavirus.

In a blog post, the researchers noted: “The data you help us generate will be quickly and openly disseminated as part of an open science collaboration of multiple laboratories around the world, giving researchers new tools that may unlock new opportunities for developing lifesaving drugs.”

If you want to use your spare PC processing power to help, simply download the Folding@Home Windows application here, install it on your computer, and set it to work.

In other tech-related coronavirus news, it seems that PC sales will be affected through 2020, with pretty considerable drops set to be witnessed, according to analyst estimations.

Via Tom’s Hardware

Darren is a freelancer writing news and features for TechRadar (and occasionally T3) across a broad range of computing topics including CPUs, GPUs, various other hardware, VPNs, antivirus and more. He has written about tech for the best part of three decades, and writes books in his spare time (his debut novel - 'I Know What You Did Last Supper' - was published by Hachette UK in 2013).