The International Society for Computational Biology (ISCB) announces new Global Threats Challenge
Bioinformatics is unequivocally an essential tool for understanding biology. All areas of the life-sciences are becoming increasingly digital and rely on computational methods to store, process, analyze, mine, model and integrate complex multi-dimensional data. Using computational approaches to combating the latest emerging global threats is essential. The International Society for Computational Biology (ISCB) announces the Emerging Global Threats Challenge. ISCB will give out the Emerging Global Threats Challenge Award, along with a prize of $2000, at its July 2017 annual meeting (ISCB ISMB/ECCB 2017, Prague, Czech Republic). This challenge is to use computational research to better understand and combat an emerging global threat.
In the development of any modern drug, computational biology is positioned to contribute through comparative analysis of the genome sequences of virus strains, and 3-D protein modeling. Other computational approaches to global threats include large-scale docking studies of virus proteins with human proteins and with small-molecule libraries, computational modeling of the spread of the virus, and computational mining of the virus/disease literature. Together such computational efforts could significantly accelerate traditional scientific approaches.
ISCB is dedicated to advancing the understanding of living systems through computation. ISCB now represents more than 3000 computational biologists working in over 70 countries. It organizes more than seven annual international meetings, and confers several major prizes, including the Accomplishments by a Senior Scientist Award, ISCB Innovator Award, the ISCB Overton Prize, and the ISCB Outstanding Contributions Award. With the ISCB Emerging Global Threats Challenge Award the society offers an award for a specific scientific objective thereby acknowledging the urgency of action to fight a rising challenge.
Submission and Judgment Criteria
The award will be conferred on the submission that most closely meets the goal of providing an immediate solution from the field of computational biology as assessed according to the following terms: (1) high impact, (2) broad access, (3) measurable outcomes on understanding, handling, treating, or preventing the disease or virus, and (4) close interaction with established mechanisms of disease/ virus control and research.
A selected team comprising experts chosen from areas such as epidemiology, public health, computational virology, structural biology, vaccine development, translational bioinformatics, genomics, and genome analysis will assess all submissions. ISCB will only consider submissions that remain within a limit of two pages. Please note that your submission could be in the style of a journal paper. Be advised of the following constraints when fitting your material onto the two pages: (1) the typeface must be Arial font throughout, using a minimum 9-pt font size for figures and a minimum of 10-pt Arial for the text. The precise minimum page margins depend on your choice of format (US-letter: a minimum of 1.25 inches on top and bottom and a minimum of 2.5 inches at the sides; A4: a minimum of 3 cm on top and bottom and a minimum of 1.5 cm on both sides.)