Life Technologies said this week that it has signed an agreement with Copan Flock to provide an integrated, end-to-end system for DNA forensics.

Terms of the agreement call for Life Tech to globally distribute Copan's sample-collection systems for forensic applications. Copan's Nucleic-Card DNA collection system is a chemically treated sample collection matrix that lyses cells and preserves DNA spotted onto a paper substrate, and can help facilitate rapid and direct PCR amplification using Life Tech's STR kits.

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Technology Review reports that researchers in the US have used CRISPR to modify a number of human embryos.

By introducing genes from butterfly peas and Canterbury bells, researchers in Japan have developed a blue chrysanthemum, according to NPR.

Plant researchers plan to sequence some 10,000 samples that represent the major plant clades, ScienceInsider reports.

In Nature this week: a Danish reference genome, and more.