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NIH's Molecular Libraries program must be "weaned" from the NIH director's office Common Fund starting next year, reports Science's Jocelyn Kaiser. But with all the budget worries going around at other NIH institutes, no other center seems to want to take in the $70 million program, she adds. The program funds high-throughput screening centers that academic researchers may use to search for interactions between their proteins, or other molecule of interest, and chemicals in the library, to aid early-stage drug development. Although NIH Director Francis Collins is a proponent of the program, Common Fund money will be gone in 2014, so it must find another sponsor. Unfortunately, the other institutes are reluctant to divert what money they have away from research grant funding in order to pay for the Molecular Libraries, Kaiser says. "NIH has put a huge investment into [the Molecular Libraries], and it's running very well," says John Reed, head of the screening center at Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute. "If there's not a long-term commitment to keep it available to the academic community, why did we make this hundreds of millions of dollars investment?"

The Scan

Renewed Gain-of-Function Worries

The New York Times writes that the pandemic is renewing concerns about gain-of-function research.

Who's Getting the Patents?

A trio of researchers has analyzed gender trends in biomedical patents issued between 1976 and 2010 in the US, New Scientist reports.

Other Uses

CBS Sunday Morning looks at how mRNA vaccine technology could be applied beyond SARS-CoV-2.

PLOS Papers Present Analysis of Cervicovaginal Microbiome, Glycosylation in Model Archaea, More

In PLOS this week: functional potential of the cervicovaginal microbiome, glycosylation patterns in model archaea, and more.