Just a note on the new run:
To refresh your memory: the central dogma of molecular biology is the DNA→ RNA→protein, and the proteins can also feed back, bind to DNA sequences of genes, and turn them on (to make RNA and then protein), or off (no RNA, no protein!).
Our previous runs on DNA@home were looking for nucleotide sequence motifs (certain “words” in the DNA alphabet, for example the sequence CAGGTG) that allow the metastasis-related proteins Snail and Slug to bind to DNA of genes, and hence turn those genes on and off. We did get a ton of data from that, and we’re in the process of analyzing that right now!
Now, we are asking the question, what regulates the regulators? In other words, Snail and Slug are proteins that bind to DNA and turn genes off, leading to cancer metastasis. But what turns Snail and Slug on? Are there DNA sequences in the Snail and Slug genes themselves that are regulated? Also, there are some other proteins- Zeb1, Zeb2, Twist, etc. that are also very important in regulating genes in the same way- binding to DNA and turning genes off or on.
The new runs are helping us mine the sequences of these other cancer genes, to see if we can find anything new that possibly binds there.