Before the advent of laser-guided missiles, battle ships were equipped with cannons that weighed 2,000 tons and required dozens of sailors to muscle them toward their target. The National Human Genome Research Institute, as it transitions from sequencing genes to understanding how they work, moves in much the same lumbering way — though without the sailors.

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Researchers find that historical factors influence which genes are the most highly studied, the Atlantic reports.

The US National Science Foundation's new sexual harassment policy is to go into effect next month, according to Nature News.

Researchers report using genotyping to tie together illegal ivory shipments and trace them back to a handful of cartels, the New York Times reports.

In Nature this week: genomic ancestry analysis of Sardinians, current noncoding mutations in colorectal cancer, and more.