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Title: Helix: Algorithm/Architecture Co-design for Accelerating Nanopore Genome Base-calling
Nanopore genome sequencing is the key to enabling personalized medicine, global food security, and virus surveillance. The state-of-the-art base-callers adopt deep neural networks (DNNs) to translate electrical signals generated by nanopore sequencers to digital DNA symbols. A DNN-based base-caller consumes 44.5% of total execution time of a nanopore sequencing pipeline. However, it is difficult to quantize a base-caller and build a power-efficient processing-in-memory (PIM) to run the quantized base-caller. Although conventional network quantization techniques reduce the computing overhead of a base-caller by replacing floating-point multiply-accumulations by cheaper fixed-point operations, it significantly increases the number of systematic errors that cannot be corrected by read votes. The power density of prior nonvolatile memory (NVM)-based PIMs has already exceeded memory thermal tolerance even with active heat sinks, because their power efficiency is severely limited by analog-to-digital converters (ADC). Finally, Connectionist Temporal Classification (CTC) decoding and read voting cost 53.7% of total execution time in a quantized base-caller, and thus became its new bottleneck. In this paper, we propose a novel algorithm/architecture co-designed PIM, Helix, to power-efficiently and accurately accelerate nanopore base-calling. From algorithm perspective, we present systematic error aware training to minimize the number of systematic errors in a quantized base-caller. From architecture perspective, more » we propose a low-power SOT-MRAM-based ADC array to process analog-to-digital conversion operations and improve power efficiency of prior DNN PIMs. Moreover, we revised a traditional NVM-based dot-product engine to accelerate CTC decoding operations, and create a SOT-MRAM binary comparator array to process read voting. Compared to state-of-the-art PIMs, Helix improves base-calling throughput by 6x, throughput per Watt by 11.9x and per mm2 by 7.5x without degrading base-calling accuracy. « less
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Award ID(s):
1908992 1909509
Publication Date:
Journal Name:
ACM International Conference on Parallel Architectures and Compilation
Page Range or eLocation-ID:
293 to 304
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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