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NSF Ready to Spend $8M in Bioinformatics Research Grants

NEW YORK, Feb. 14 - The US National Science Foundation is offering $8 million in grants for bioinformatics research through its Biological Databases and Informatics program.


The program, a cross-disciplinary effort backed by the Directorate for Biological Sciences, is designed to help design, develop, and implement new information tools, the NSF said.


The foundation plans to award about 25 new grants for up to five years apiece that are worth between $50,000 to $500,000 a year. The program is described in further detail in an announcement released yesterday by the NSF.


The Biological Databases and Informatics program is designed to encourage new approaches to knowledge management, especially proposals that seek to develop new types of informatics tools and database structures for community databases. Objectives, according to the program description, include:


--encouraging research into generic database infrastructures that can be applied to different fields;


--developing new data structures for biological databases;


--supporting "meta-database" architecture to link multiple platforms; and


--standardizing nomenclature and content;


The project also underwrites conferences, workshops, standardization projects, and working groups.

The Scan

For Better Odds

Bloomberg reports that a child has been born following polygenic risk score screening as an embryo.

Booster Decision Expected

The New York Times reports the US Food and Drug Administration is expected to authorize a booster dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech SARS-CoV-2 vaccine this week for individuals over 65 or at high risk.

Snipping HIV Out

The Philadelphia Inquirer reports Temple University researchers are to test a gene-editing approach for treating HIV.

PLOS Papers on Cancer Risk Scores, Typhoid Fever in Colombia, Streptococcus Protection

In PLOS this week: application of cancer polygenic risk scores across ancestries, genetic diversity of typhoid fever-causing Salmonella, and more.