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Initiating Independence

Several young investigators in Australia and the US this week received grants to get their independent research programs up and running.

The Australian Research Council named 277 researchers with recent PhDs who are to receive its inaugural Discovery Early Career Researcher Awards. According to The Australian, "the ARC diverted the $104 million funding handed out in DECRAs from its mainstream Discovery Grants program."

ARC's Margaret Sheil spoke with The Australian about the importance of supporting early-career researchers. "Once you have that independence it gives you credibility, negotiating power, and kudos that help you to do other things," Sheil said. "And in terms of attracting global talent, the entry point for most new blood is early in the career, not late," she added.

Meanwhile, the US National Institutes of Health Director's Early Independence Awards program announced its 10 winners, as well. Funding for the NIH Director's awards is supplied by the agency's Common Fund.

Applications for 2012 NIH Director's Early Independence Awards are due January 30, 2012.

The Scan

CDC Calls Delta "Variant of Concern"

CNN reports the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention now considers the Delta variant of SARS-CoV-2 to be a "variant of concern."

From FDA to Venture Capital

Former FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn is taking a position at a venture capital firm, leading some ethicists to raise eyebrows, according to the Washington Post.

Consent Questions

Nature News writes that there are questions whether informed consent was obtained for some submissions to a database of Y-chromosome profiles.

Cell Studies on Multimodal Single-Cell Analysis, Coronaviruses in Bats, Urban Microbiomes

In Cell this week: approach to analyze multimodal single-cell genomic data, analysis of bat coronaviruses, and more.