Skip to main content
Premium Trial:

Request an Annual Quote

IT Guy Tells It Like It Is

Premium

I appreciate Nat Goodman’s articles addressing important current genomics research issues.

I’m referring first to his article (“Microarray Mining Made Easy … Almost,” Nov. ’00) questioning why microarray users didn’t feel the need to replicate. How did they determine if a gene was up- or down-regulated to a significant level as opposed to the null hypothesis that it didn’t change in expression? How was the notorious “x-fold” level determined?”

Then I read his article about annotation of the human genome sequence (“The Wicked Truth about Annotated Data,” Feb. ’01). I understand the researchers working on the Arabidopsis genome have requested additional funding to re-annotate that genome, because they aren’t satisfied with how it was done the first time. The annotation science and software are still in an experimental stage. The media paints the picture that “sequenced” genomes are more finished than they really are.

I also am still concerned that the whole point (I thought) of whole-genome sequencing projects was to associate sequence with function on an organism level. What I’ve seen is work at the mRNA and protein level plus approaches to knock out gene function in hopes that an associated phenotype will become evident. What we need is integrated information on all these levels.

Dr. Kim Lewers, USDA-ARS-PSI-SARL

Mutated copy

In the January issue, Stephen Heller was incorrectly identified in “Who Let the Dogs Out?” (p. 34) as working at the USDA. Dr. Heller retired from the USDA last August and is now a guest researcher at NIST/SRD.

In the same article, the name of Alexis Rockman, the artist who painted “The Farm,” was misspelled. We apologize for the errors.

The Scan

Not as High as Hoped

The Associated Press says initial results from a trial of CureVac's SARS-CoV-2 vaccine suggests low effectiveness in preventing COVID-19.

Finding Freshwater DNA

A new research project plans to use eDNA sampling to analyze freshwater rivers across the world, the Guardian reports.

Rise in Payments

Kaiser Health News investigates the rise of payments made by medical device companies to surgeons that could be in violation of anti-kickback laws.

Nature Papers Present Ginkgo Biloba Genome Assembly, Collection of Polygenic Indexes, More

In Nature this week: a nearly complete Ginkgo biloba genome assembly, polygenic indexes for dozens of phenotypes, and more.