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A New Kind of Cancer 'Hub'

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Stanford's George Lundberg introduces a new kind of cancer research and information hub in The Scientist this week. Called Cancer Commons, the new platform adds the patient to the publishing equation, in order to advance the way cancer is treated and the way therapies are developed. It blends scientific publishing with social media in "a hub of open-science communities in which physicians, patients, and scientists collaborate on models of cancer subtypes to more accurately predict individual responses to therapy," Lundberg says. The platform's developers are creating molecular disease models for various kinds of cancer, starting with melanoma. They'll match patients with the best individualized treatments based on genomic information and record and disseminate outcomes to the research community, he adds. Subtypes and therapies will be revised based on new information and research. The platform will also include information that's been peer-reviewed, but deemed not ready for prime time in the hopes that it might be helpful to late-stage cancer patients.

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.