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Auburn to Use $14M Stimulus Grant for Science Center

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Auburn University has reaped a $14.4 million stimulus grant from the National Institute of Standards and Technology, which will go toward the building of a new science building for conducting genomics and biology research in a variety of areas.

Auburn will use the NIST grant to cover 50 percent of the cost to build its Center for Advanced Science, Innovation, and Commerce, which will include three genomics labs, three labs for predictive biology and informatics, two labs each for biofuels and quality standards, bioproducts, and detection and food safety, and one lab for economic impact and forecasting.

The 68,000 square foot center will be home to five research clusters, and will bring together research teams that currently are dispersed on and off campus.

NIST also granted funding for two other life sciences laboratory construction projects, giving $15 million to the University of North Carolina Wilmington for the Marine Biotechnology in North Carolina Program, and $15 million to the University of Miami, for a Marine Technology and Life Sciences Seawater Research Building.

"These awards mean four major construction projects in these local areas, with the jobs and economic benefits they bring," US Commerce Secretary Gary Locke said in a statement.

Even more important, Locke added, "these four projects provide a major boost to scientific research at respected universities, enhancing innovation, public safety, and environmental protection for many, many years to come."

NIST received a total of $610 million in funding under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, including $220 million for laboratory research measures and other services supporting economic growth through competitive grants, research fellowships, and purchase of advanced measurement equipment and supplies.

The Scan

For Better Odds

Bloomberg reports that a child has been born following polygenic risk score screening as an embryo.

Booster Decision Expected

The New York Times reports the US Food and Drug Administration is expected to authorize a booster dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech SARS-CoV-2 vaccine this week for individuals over 65 or at high risk.

Snipping HIV Out

The Philadelphia Inquirer reports Temple University researchers are to test a gene-editing approach for treating HIV.

PLOS Papers on Cancer Risk Scores, Typhoid Fever in Colombia, Streptococcus Protection

In PLOS this week: application of cancer polygenic risk scores across ancestries, genetic diversity of typhoid fever-causing Salmonella, and more.