NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) — Sigma-Aldrich has paid Sangamo BioSciences a $1 million milestone as part of a deal for Sangamo to develop zinc finger nuclease reagents for the research market, Sangamo said this week.

The payment was a production milestone under an agreement the companies made in July 2007.

ZFNs can be designed to target any gene in any organism, Sangamo said, and can be used to rapidly make precise changes to a cell's characteristics

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Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen also contributed to brain research, NPR reports.

The New York Times reports on the shifting interpretations of what some genetic variants mean over time.

MIT's Technology Review reports on Genentech's pursuit of personalized cancer vaccines.

In Cell this week: investigation of metastatic tumor evolution, more than 16,000 genetic variants introduced into the budding yeast model organism, and more.