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Call for Open Pharma Access

Cory Doctorow argues at The Guardian that all, not just publicly funded, pharmaceutical research should be made open access. Many people, he says, agree that all publicly funded research should be available to the public — the main argument being that since the public funded it, they should be able to see the result. But Doctorow goes a step further.

He writes references a book by Ben Goldacre, called Bad Pharma, in which Goldacre notes that about half of pharmaceutical research is never published, likely due to results showing that the drug under study doesn't work. "The reason pharma companies should be required to publish their results isn't that they've received a public subsidy for the research. Rather, it is because they are asking for a governmental certification saying that their products are fit for consumption, and they are asking for regulatory space to allow doctors to write prescriptions for those products," Doctorow writes. "We need them to disclose their research – even if doing so undermines their profits – because without that research, we can't know if their products are fit for use."

The Scan

For Better Odds

Bloomberg reports that a child has been born following polygenic risk score screening as an embryo.

Booster Decision Expected

The New York Times reports the US Food and Drug Administration is expected to authorize a booster dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech SARS-CoV-2 vaccine this week for individuals over 65 or at high risk.

Snipping HIV Out

The Philadelphia Inquirer reports Temple University researchers are to test a gene-editing approach for treating HIV.

PLOS Papers on Cancer Risk Scores, Typhoid Fever in Colombia, Streptococcus Protection

In PLOS this week: application of cancer polygenic risk scores across ancestries, genetic diversity of typhoid fever-causing Salmonella, and more.