Fifty-five researchers met in Trento, Italy, in October to look for collaborative solutions to the limitations that are emerging in the way that models of complex biological systems are created and managed.
The occasion was the international workshop in High Performance Computational Systems Biology, HiBi09, at the Microsoft Research–University of Trento Centre for Computational and Systems Biology (CoSBi, see page 15), in collaboration with the Barcelona Supercomputing Center.
It was the first time such a workshop has been held, and it was called in response to a growing problem, the mismatch between real life and models of it.
The fundamental problem is that in real life biochemical reactions do not work in sequence, as most models do, but in parallel.
Workshop participants pose in front of the CoSBI building.
For three days, attendees discussed various solutions – both in programming and in basic hardware. The workshop also heard presentations from Kevin Burrage of the University of Queensland, Australia, Jaco van de Pol from the University of Twente, the Netherlands, and Thomas Henzinger from the University of Berkeley, California.