D-Wave's Quantum Computing

Eric Ladizinsky

As the Co-Founder and Chief Science Officer of D-Wave Systems, the world’s first quantum computing company, Eric Ladizinsky, has been a strong proponent of using quantum computing to solve complex problems that could benefit humanity. Eric played a key role in the early stages of forming DNA-SEQ and is a member of the Board of Directors.

D-Wave Systems, Inc. is a quantum computing company, based in Burnaby, British Columbia, which has developed of a new class of high performance computing systems. These systems are architected around a processor that uses a computational model known as adiabatic quantum computing (AQC). The system is designed explicitly to harness quantum mechanical effects to fundamentally and dramatically reduce the time and memory requirements for computation.

In May 2011, D-Wave System announced D-Wave One, the world's first commercially available quantum computer with Lockheed Martin being their first customer. In May 2013 it announced that a collaboration between NASA, Google and the Universities Space Research Association (USRA) launched a Quantum Artificial Intelligence Lab using a 512 qubit D-Wave Two that would be used for research into machine learning, among other fields of study.

Quantum Targeting

D-Wave will use both State of the Art Classical Solvers (Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning) and their ever evolving Quantum Computers to solve DNA-SEQ’s molecular screening/search problem.

Specifically, finding small molecules (from a large database) to tightly bind to and de-activate faulty cell regulatory molecules (kinases).

The success of D-Wave’s Quantum Computer trajectory will provide an unprecedented advantage for DNA-SEQ in designing superior, kinase-inhibitor based cancer treatments.

In the words of Greg Tallant, Research Engineering Manager, Flight Control & VMS Integration – FW, Advanced Development Programs, Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Company, as to Lockheed Martins purchase of the first D-Wave Computer.

“It’s a game changer for the corporation, it’s a game changer for our customers, and ultimately it’s a game changer for humanity. Computationally this is the equivalent of the Wright brothers at Kitty Hawk.“

In terms of cancer treatment and drug discovery D-Wave enables the Alliance to approach problems that are computationally hard or impossible for classical systems.

Problems beyond current or foreseeable computing systems

calculations chart

Complex pattern matching

  • Machine learning
  • Large database search

Complex organization

  • Finding the best answer from a vast number of possiblities

The critical problem of identifying or matching a molecule or inhibitor with a cancer patients’ mutation requires radical new computing solutions.

Getting useful insights from vast genomic data of cancer patients to better understand and treat disease.

Genetic Data Exploding Exponentially

growth of genbank chart

Lots of abstract data being generated

Cutting Edge Algorithms will help us to discover patterns in vast complex data.

Machine Learning

Program computers to learn from experience (data) to developing capabilities beyond human understanding

D-Wave Quantum Computing

The Palette of Quantum Phenonenon

Quantum Tunneling

Allows an object to appear on the other side of a barrier it cannot penetrate.

Allows chemical reactions impossible classically.

In computation: Allows the D-Wave Quantum Computer to explore solutions hidden (impossible to reach) from classical approaches.

Energy Level Quantization

Electrons can only exist in discrete energy states.

Go from one state to the other without transversing intervening space.

In computation: For Noise to Effect quantum processors it must be big enough to span the energy gaps..D-Wave QC engineered large energy gaps to make their QC robust to Noise (unlike other QC designs).


A single quantum object can evolve along multiple paths simultaneously.

In computation: Allows QC's to explore vast number of possible solutions simultaneously - massive parallelism in calculation.


 Distant, unconnected events are perfectly correlated.

In computation: More information transfer than possible Classically - greatly improves efficiency.

Applications Being Developed on the D-Wave Quantum Computer