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And Now a Lawsuit

The Economist takes a look at the Anil Potti misconduct case at Duke University — Potti, Joseph Nevins, and colleagues published reports saying that they could predict lung cancer progression based on gene expression levels determined using microarrays. Questions began to arise about the science as well as about some claims Potti made on various documents. This led to a number of papers being retracted, clinical trials being halted, and investigations being started. Potti resigned from his position at Duke. "The whole thing, then, is a mess," The Economist says.

In addition, Ivan Oransky at Retraction Watch reports that Potti also failed to disclose corporate ties that he had at the time that he published two Journal of the American Medical Association papers. (Those papers were not among those retracted.) Further, Potti, Nevins, Duke, and others are being sued by clinical trial patients or their estates. The lawsuit "emphasizes, as you would expect, that Duke and the Potti team were warned repeatedly about problems in their work, notably by Keith Baggerly and a colleague," Oransky writes.

The Scan

Study Points to Tuberculosis Protection by Gaucher Disease Mutation

A mutation linked to Gaucher disease in the Ashkenazi Jewish population appears to boost Mycobacterium tuberculosis resistance in a zebrafish model of the lysosomal storage condition, a new PNAS study finds.

SpliceVault Portal Provides Look at RNA Splicing Changes Linked to Genetic Variants

The portal, described in Nature Genetics, houses variant-related messenger RNA splicing insights drawn from RNA sequencing data in nearly 335,700 samples — a set known as the 300K-RNA resource.

Automated Sequencing Pipeline Appears to Allow Rapid SARS-CoV-2 Lineage Detection in Nevada Study

Researchers in the Journal of Molecular Diagnostics describe and assess a Clear Labs Dx automated workflow, sequencing, and bioinformatic analysis method for quickly identifying SARS-CoV-2 lineages.

UK Team Presents Genetic, Epigenetic Sequencing Method

Using enzymatic DNA preparation steps, researchers in Nature Biotechnology develop a strategy for sequencing DNA, along with 5-methylcytosine and 5-hydroxymethylcytosine, on existing sequencers.