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People in the News: Paul Billings, Ryan Taft

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CollabRx has appointed Paul Billings to its board of directors.

Billings most recently served as chief medical officer at Life Technologies. He is executive chairman of Melanoma Diagnostics, a director of Trovagene, and a co-founder and past medical director of the Cordblood Registry. He was also a senior vice president for corporate development at Laboratory Corporation of America and a co-founder of Omicia.


Ryan Taft has joined Illumina as director of scientific research.

Taft is laboratory head and senior research fellow at the University of Queensland's Institute for Molecular Bioscience. He holds a BSc in biochemistry and molecular biology from the University of California, Davis. Taft will maintain a joint appointment with UQ while working for Illumina.

The Scan

Long COVID-19 Susceptibility Clues Contained in Blood Plasma Proteome

A longitudinal study in eBioMedicine found weeks-long blood plasma proteome shifts after SARS-CoV-2 infection, along with proteomic signatures that appeared to coincide with long Covid risk.

Tibetan Study Finds Adaptive Variant Influencing Skin Pigmentation

With a combination of phenotyping and genetic data, researchers document at PNAS a Tibetan-enriched enhancer variant influencing melanin synthesis and ultraviolet light response.

Domestication Linked to Nervous System Genes in Inbred Mouse Strains

Researchers highlighted more than 300 positively selected genes in domesticated mice, including genes linked to nervous system function or behavior in Genome Biology.

ALS Genetic Testing May Be Informative Across Age Ranges, Study Finds

Researchers in the journal Brain identified clinically actionable variants in a significant subset of older ALS patients, prompting them to point to the potential benefits of broader test use.