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Kunié Sugiura, John Updike, Randy Grimes


New York artist Kunié Sugiura created the photogram of MIT biologist Phillip Sharp that appears on our cover and on p. 36 during a visit to his lab in January. Sugiura, who creates camera-less photographs by placing her subject in front of photographic paper and exposing them to light, says she asked Sharp to “bring some things that represent who he is and what he does” to the sitting. He held the string to represent RNA splicing, for which he won a Nobel Prize in 1993. Art collector Howard Stein, the man with the money behind the Gene Media Forum, commissioned Sugiura’s portrait of Sharp, as well as portraits of several other scientists including Günter Blobel and Eric Lander.

Better known for his work on rabbits, author John Updike penned this month’s Blunt End page, “To a Well-Connected Mouse (Upon reading of the genetic closeness of mice and men).” Since the reference escaped all but the most literary in GenomeWeb’s office, we’ll point out that the poem borrows heavily on the 1785 work of Scottish national bard Robert Burns, whose verse “To A Mouse (On turning her up in her nest, with the plough),” is famous for the couplet, “The best laid schemes o’ Mice an’ Men, gang aft agley.” Updike’s poem originally appeared in The New Yorker.

Randy Grimes, “Why Grants are Good for Business,” p. 55, is the founder and principal of The Randall Group, a boutique consultancy that helps small-to-medium-sized technical companies find and win government grants. He has helped clients secure and execute more than $15 million in grant funding for their biotech, medical device, MEMS, and nanotech R&D. Grimes is a former research scientist who coauthored six patents. More recently he worked as a marketing manager for a high-growth technology firm. He holds a bachelor’s in materials science and engineering from the University of Arizona and an MBA from the University of Michigan.


The Scan

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Pfizer-BioNTech Vaccine Response in Kids

The Pfizer-BioNTech SARS-CoV-2 vaccine in a lower-dose format appears to generate an immune response among children, according to the Washington Post.

Chicken Changes to Prevent Disease

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PNAS Papers on Siberian Dog Ancestry, Insect Reproduction, Hippocampal Neurogenesis

In PNAS this week: ancestry and admixture among Siberian dogs, hormone role in fruit fly reproduction, and more.