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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Technology Review reports that researchers in the US have used CRISPR to modify a number of human embryos.

By introducing genes from butterfly peas and Canterbury bells, researchers in Japan have developed a blue chrysanthemum, according to NPR.

Plant researchers plan to sequence some 10,000 samples that represent the major plant clades, ScienceInsider reports.

In Nature this week: a Danish reference genome, and more.