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A Slight Change

The National Institutes of Health has issued a notice in the Federal Register seeking public comment on a proposed revision of the definition of human embryonic stem cells. The previous definition “had the unintended consequence of excluding certain hESCs which may otherwise be appropriate for federal funding,” the notice reads. The newly proposed definition amends that pluripotent cells derived from early stage embryos “up to and including the blastocyst stage” are to be considered hESCs, whereas the previous definition accounted for only cells in the blastocyst stage. Lana Skirboll, associate director of the NIH’s Office of Science Policy told Nature that the change is merely a “small technical revision.”

The Scan

Not Kept "Clean and Sanitary"

A Food and Drug Administration inspection uncovered problems with cross contamination at an Emergent BioSolutions facility, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Resumption Recommendation Expected

The Washington Post reports that US officials are expected to give the go-ahead to resume using Johnson & Johnson's SARS-CoV-2 vaccine.

Canada's New Budget on Science

Science writes that Canada's new budget includes funding for the life sciences, but not as much as hoped for investigator-driven research.

Nature Papers Examine Single-Cell, Multi-Omic SARS-CoV-2 Response; Flatfish Sequences; More

In Nature this week: single-cell, multi-omics analysis provides insight into COVID-19 pathogenesis, evolution of flatfish, and more.