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In Review: The Birth of PLoS, DNA-Inspired Dance, Prepping Ancient Samples for Genomic Analysis, More


In September 2001, Genome Technology pointed to a report in its sister publication BioInform that detailed how the Public Library of Science's Michael Eisen and 25,000 of his supporters had issued an ultimatum to several top-tier journals — at the time, they pledged to publish in, edit or review for, and subscribe to only those publications that agreed to deposit all articles in PubMed or another freely accessible resource within six months of their initial publication. Should the journals not agree to those terms, PLoS would go rogue, publishing its own journals, BioInform reported. Incorporated and launched in 2003 as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, PLoS now publishes peer-reviewed, open-access content under seven titles. In 2009, the organization launched a forum for the rapid communication of new, expert-reviewed research findings, PLoS Currents. And in 2010, PLoS launched one such forum that is devoted to research on genomic tests.

Five years ago, GT reported on choreographer Liz Lerman's artistic interpretation of the human -genome. Lerman, who premiered her opus "Ferocious Beauty: Genome" in 2006, has since taken her DNA-inspired dance on the road. In 2009, she and her company brought the composition to James Madison University, where student participants "constructed themselves into a human genome" as part of their campus orientation activities, the Harrisonburg, Va.-based Rocktown Weekly reported at the time. This past January, Lerman shared the JMU stage with National Institutes of Health Director Francis Collins, where the two discussed the interplay between art and science.

And in September 2010, GT examined how researchers were using modern approaches to prepare ancient samples for sequencing and mass spectrometric analysis. The University of York's Michael Hofreiter told GT that next-generation sequencing "has had an enormous effect" on ancient DNA analysis. In May, a team led by researchers at McMaster University in Ontario reported its assembly of a complete mitochondrial genome from a Columbian mammoth based on DNA samples derived from approximately 11,000-year-old fossilized tusk and bone fragments.

The Scan

Study Reveals Details of SARS-CoV-2 Spread Across Brazil

A genomic analysis in Nature Microbiology explores how SARS-CoV-2 spread into, across, and from Brazil.

New Study Highlights Utility of Mutation Testing in Anaplastic Thyroid Cancer

Genetic mutations in BRAF and RAS are associated with patient outcomes in anaplastic thyroid carcinoma, a new JCO Precision Oncology study reports.

Study Points to Increased Risk of Dangerous Blood Clots in COVID-19 Patients

An analysis in JAMA Internal Medicine finds that even mild COVID-19 increases risk of venous thromboembolism.

Y Chromosome Study Reveals Details on Timing of Human Settlement in Americas

A Y chromosome-based analysis suggests South America may have first been settled more than 18,000 years ago, according to a new PLOS One study.