NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – The J. Craig Venter Institute announced last night that it is launching a new Sorcerer II Expedition, called the J. Robert Beyster and Life Technologies 2009-2010 Research Voyage.

On the two-year voyage, a team of scientists led by Craig Venter will sample microbial diversity in the Baltic, Mediterranean, and Black Seas — areas of interest because they are isolated from the major oceans and expected to contain unique microbial communities.

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Robert Redfield is floated as the next director of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Washington Post reports.

The New York Times writes that the National Institutes of Health's All of Us Research Program is "ambitious" and that some are concerned it might be overly so.

Representative Lamar Smith's criticism of the National Science Foundation has "changed the nature of the conversation," according to ScienceInsider.

In PLOS this week: non-coding RNA function in yeast, transcriptomic profiles of malaria parasites, and more.