Thousands of clinicians and researchers have gathered at the 2011 meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology in Chicago to hear about the latest advances in cancer science and treatment. National Cancer Institute Director Harold Varmus kicked things off by talking about what NCI plans to do in the next few months. There is an opportunity to make advances against cancer, and accelerate progress in discovery, understanding disease mechanisms, and translating developments in the lab to new treatments, diagnostics, and biomarker tools, he said.

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Helix customers can purchase apps that interpret different aspects of their genome, Technology Review reports.

The New York Times reports that a number of companies and research institutes are pursuing gene therapies.

Salmon with shorter telomeres survive to make the trip back to their river homes, New Scientist reports.

In PLOS this week: vaginal microbiome composition, population patterns of Chagas-carrying Rhodnius ecuadoriensis, and more.