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NIH managers aren't following the advice of review panels and are "giving hundreds of millions of dollars a year to scientists," namely young investigators, "whose projects are deemed less scientifically worthy than those denied money," says the New York Times. From a Government Accountability Office report, the Times says that 19 percent of awarded grants made in 2007 were exceptions, and is nearly double the 2003 level.

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A survey by Nature finds that most researchers want scientific meetings to continue virtually or with a virtual component, even after the pandemic ends.

Bloomberg reports that the B.1.351 SARS-CoV-2 viral variant could prompt the formulation of better vaccines.

Certain blood proteins may be able to distinguish COVID-19 patients who will become critically ill from those who will not, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.

In Genome Biology this week: algorithm to assess regulatory features, approach to integrate multiple single-cell RNA-seq datasets, and more.