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From Grades to Paychecks


It's human nature to want to know how you stack up against your peers. In school, you compared grades, feeling a twinge of pride when you did better on an exam than your hapless lab partner. Maybe you compared baseball or Pokémon cards with friends to see who had the more desirable ones. Then, when school is finally done, salary becomes the competitive benchmark. To help you see how you're doing compared to that old college friend or that irritating benchmate from graduate school, we surveyed 1,870 people in the field, and asked them about their pay, benefits, and more. And for the first time, we also divvy the numbers up by gender.

We extend our thanks to you for responding to our survey as we wouldn't be able to do this each year without your help.

Elsewhere in this issue, Matthew Dublin writes in his Brute Force column that personalized medicine is facing some unique information technology challenges. Exacerbating the issue of including genomic information in health care IT infrastructure is the need for better interpretation, database interoperability, and electronic health records. However, Matt says, these problems are all being tackled.

Tracy Vence reports on the latest approaches researchers are using to make maps of methylation and other epigenetic marks, and make sense of what those marks mean. And Christie Rizk takes a look at research on the tree of life. She spoke with experts who are using genome sequences and metagenomic information to try to determine how bacteria and archaea evolved.

A correction: In an article appearing in the April issue, GT incorrectly identified Affymetrix's vice president of clinical marketing, Dara Wright, as a male. Wright is female.

Finally, a clarification: Last month's proteomics feature stated that an April 2010 Journal of Proteome Research paper, which identified 217 new proteins in saliva, doubled the amount of known salivary proteins. While that study increased the number of proteins known, that knowledge was actually doubled in an earlier study that found more than 2,300 salivary proteins. GT regrets these errors.

The Scan

Booster for At-Risk

The New York Times reports that the US Food and Drug Administration has authorized a third dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech SARS-CoV-2 vaccine for people over 65 or at increased risk.

Preprints OK to Mention Again

Nature News reports the Australian Research Council has changed its new policy and now allows preprints to be cited in grant applications.

Hundreds of Millions More to Share

The US plans to purchase and donate 500 million additional SARS-CoV-2 vaccine doses, according to the Washington Post.

Nature Papers Examine Molecular Program Differences Influencing Neural Cells, Population History of Polynesia

In Nature this week: changes in molecular program during embryonic development leads to different neural cell types, and more.