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Sowing Ag Dollars


For this fiscal year, the US Department of Agriculture was allocated some $95.4 billion, of which an estimated $19.4 billion will go toward discretionary spending, the broad umbrella under which the agency’s research grant funding lies. That’s a decrease from about $22 billion last year.

Researchers with an agricultural bent have found plenty of grant opportunities — especially for crop sequencing and pathogen genomics — for their science. We opted to look into USDA’s records to see where the money is going. Using their grant search tool, we plugged in key words such as “bioinformatics,” “RNAi,” “genome,” and “microarray” to track down the funding relevant to this field.

The list below shows the highest and most systems biology-targeted awards. It is by no means comprehensive and is meant to give you a sampling of the type of research USDA has chosen to support.

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The Scan

Support for Moderna Booster

An FDA advisory committee supports authorizing a booster for Moderna's SARS-CoV-2 vaccine, CNN reports.

Testing at UK Lab Suspended

SARS-CoV-2 testing at a UK lab has been suspended following a number of false negative results.

J&J CSO to Step Down

The Wall Street Journal reports that Paul Stoffels will be stepping down as chief scientific officer at Johnson & Johnson by the end of the year.

Science Papers Present Proteo-Genomic Map of Human Health, Brain Tumor Target, Tool to Infer CNVs

In Science this week: gene-protein-disease map, epigenomic and transcriptomic approach highlights potential therapeutic target for gliomas, and more