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Alda and Colbert Talk Science

Alan Alda appeared on The Colbert Report to talk to Stephen Colbert about his interest in science. Alda discussed the World Science Festival, which is being held in New York through the end of this week. "[Science] is so interesting, and basic science is so important," Alda said. "A hundred years ago, when they were just figuring out what was inside the atom, that wasn't really clearly understood by many people. They said only four people could understand relativity. And now, that runs our economy."

Alda also discussed his flame challenge , in which he asked scientists to try to explain a flame to an 11-year-old. The six finalists are currently being judged by hundreds of 11-year-olds, Alda said, and the winner will be announced at the festival this weekend.

The Scan

Highly Similar

Researchers have uncovered bat viruses that are highly similar to SARS-CoV-2, according to Nature News.

Gain of Oversight

According to the Wall Street Journal, the Biden Administration is considering greater oversight of gain-of-function research.

Lasker for mRNA Vaccine Work

The Scientist reports that researchers whose work enabled the development of mRNA-based vaccines are among this year's Lasker Award winners

PLOS Papers on Causal Variant Mapping, Ancient Salmonella, ALK Fusion Test for NSCLC

In PLOS this week: MsCAVIAR approach to map causal variants, analysis of ancient Salmonella, and more.