By Alex Philippidis

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Washington state lawmakers are considering more-than-doubling the business and occupation tax surcharge imposed on non-profit research institutes engaged in R&D, as well as their startup spinouts and other biotech businesses — part of an $800 million package of taxes intended to balance a $2.8 billion budget shortfall.

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An Australian-led team has generated a draft genome assembly of the invasive cane toad in hopes it will help in population control, the Sydney Morning Herald reports.

The New York Times reports that the US Department of Defense has implemented about half the recommendations made to improve safe handling of dangerous agents.

In PLOS this week: approach for teasing out archaic introgression in human genomes, immune transcription features in HCV infection, and more.

Stat News reports that Maryland is promoting itself to the biotech industry with a mobile billboard.