NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Clinical research and pharmaceutical services firm Covance said yesterday that it has closed its acquisition of Merck's Seattle-based gene expression lab.

The financial terms of the purchase, announced last month, were not disclosed, but Merck has agreed to purchase of a five-year genomic analysis services contract worth $145 million as part of the deal.

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The US Food and Drug Administration has new guidelines that enable some gene and cell therapies to undergo expedited review, according to the New York Times.

Using gene drives to control invasive species might be too risky, an initial advocate of the approach says.

Researchers have grown tumors in 3D cell cultures to better understand cancer, the Economist reports.

In Science this week: intellectual property experts argue patent battles such as the one over CRISPR are wasteful, and more.