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GenSLMs: Genome-scale language models reveal SARS-CoV-2 evolutionary dynamics
DescriptionWe seek to transform how new and emergent variants of pandemic-causing viruses, specifically SARS-CoV-2, are identified and classified. By adapting large language models (LLMs) for genomic data, we build genome-scale language models (GenSLMs) which can learn the evolutionary landscape of SARS-CoV-2 genomes. By pre-training on over 110 million prokaryotic gene sequences and fine-tuning a SARS-CoV-2-specific model on 1.5 million genomes, we show that GenSLMs can accurately and rapidly identify variants of concern. Thus, to our knowledge, GenSLMs represents one of the first whole genome scale foundation models which can generalize to other prediction tasks. We demonstrate scaling of GenSLMs on GPU-based supercomputers and AI-hardware accelerators utilizing 1.63 Zettaflops in training runs with a sustained performance of 121 PFLOPS in mixed precision and peak of 850 PFLOPS. We present initial scientific insights from examining GenSLMs in tracking evolutionary dynamics of SARS-CoV-2, paving the path to realizing this on large biological data.
ACM Gordon Bell COVID Finalist
ACM Gordon Bell Finalist