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Revamping Postdoc Training

Blogger Professor in Training, a self-described second-year assistant professor at a large university, offers some ways in which the postdoc training experience could be improved. First, the author suggests that annual reviews should be conducted by others beyond the principal investigator to hold the PI accountable for mentoring and training. Next, the author proposes setting a time limit on postdoc positions to avoid “an ongoing situation that often turns into exploitation of cheap labor.” Finally, the blogger writes, there should be a strong institutional commitment to ― and recognition of ― postdoctoral researchers. “For me as a new PI, the first step is to make sure that my own postdocs don’t experience the same problems that I did,” Professor in Training writes.

The Scan

Genome Sequences Reveal Range Mutations in Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells

Researchers in Nature Genetics detect somatic mutation variation across iPSCs generated from blood or skin fibroblast cell sources, along with selection for BCOR gene mutations.

Researchers Reprogram Plant Roots With Synthetic Genetic Circuit Strategy

Root gene expression was altered with the help of genetic circuits built around a series of synthetic transcriptional regulators in the Nicotiana benthamiana plant in a Science paper.

Infectious Disease Tracking Study Compares Genome Sequencing Approaches

Researchers in BMC Genomics see advantages for capture-based Illumina sequencing and amplicon-based sequencing on the Nanopore instrument, depending on the situation or samples available.

LINE-1 Linked to Premature Aging Conditions

Researchers report in Science Translational Medicine that the accumulation of LINE-1 RNA contributes to premature aging conditions and that symptoms can be improved by targeting them.