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For All the Mad Scientists

Science fiction blog io9 is hosting a Mad Science Contest for researchers to design their own lifeform. "Building new lifeforms is the science of the future and therefore you can never have too many garage laboratories and mad scientists devoted to it," writes Annalee Newitz at io9. The winners get an all-expenses-paid trip to Hong Kong for the Synthetic Biology Conference, or $1000, and a drawing of their lifeform. The judging will be harsh as the judges include Drew Endy, Michael Eisen, Spore game developer Jasin Shankel, and Berkeley's Terry Johnson.

The Scan

Pig Organ Transplants Considered

The Wall Street Journal reports that the US Food and Drug Administration may soon allow clinical trials that involve transplanting pig organs into humans.

'Poo-Bank' Proposal

Harvard Medical School researchers suggest people should bank stool samples when they are young to transplant when they later develop age-related diseases.

Spurred to Develop Again

New Scientist reports that researchers may have uncovered why about 60 percent of in vitro fertilization embryos stop developing.

Science Papers Examine Breast Milk Cell Populations, Cerebral Cortex Cellular Diversity, Micronesia Population History

In Science this week: unique cell populations found within breast milk, 100 transcriptionally distinct cell populations uncovered in the cerebral cortex, and more.