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After 16 days of a government shutdown, the US federal government is open once again. As the New York Times reports, a deal between lawmakers in Washington has funded the government through the middle of January and raised the nation's debt ceiling through the beginning of February.

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In Science this week: mtDNA analysis give glimpse into decline of Neanderthals in Europe, and more.

The University of Arizona's Raina Maier writes that an understanding of the Earth's microbiome is needed.

The proposed Canadian budget emphasizes partnerships with industry, Nature News reports.

An Australian study of personalized medicine has run into problems as it recruits patients.