Contribute to Cancer Research Via an Android App While You’re Asleep

Smartphone use has been on the rise as of late- everyone from young children to their parents and even grandparents know how to use and/or even own a smartphone. These devices contain powerful software and processing capabilities, which more often than not are used for our personal entertainment.

 

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Thanks to a new app produced thanks to a collaborative effort by Samsung Austria and researchers at the University of Vienna, smartphone users can contribute to scientific research efforts- without needing a degree in rocket science. The app runs while users are asleep, which is very convenient for us!

The app is named PowerSleep- it utilizes the processing power of your smartphone so data sent from the Similarity Matrix of Proteins (SIMAP) database can be decrypted. PowerSleep encodes protein sequences in an effort to contribute to medical advancements in biochemistry, cancer research, genetics and heredity, and molecular biology.

 

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Using the app is simple- all you need to do is set PowerSleep’s alarm while your smartphone is plugged and connected to Wi-Fi. Once the requirements are met, your phone will automatically be connected to the Berkeley Open Infrastructure for Network Computing (BOINC) which lets computers and mobile phones connect all over the world in order to process scientific data.

Thomas Rattei, professor of bio-informatics at the University of Vienna, commented, “In order to fight diseases like cancer and Alzheimers, we need to know how proteins are arranged. This requires trials that need a tremendous amount of processing power. Power Sleep is a bridge between science and society. It promotes not only our research, but allows people in Austria to become part of the project and, at the same time, to do good in their sleep.”

To contribute to this scientific effort, you can download the app from the Google Play Store.

 

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