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Somebody's Gotta Do It

Wandering Scientist this week outlines the role of a project manager, saying that "if you are going to tackle multiple projects at once, or even just a single long and complicated project, someone probably has to forgo work doing the hands-on technical and/or scientific work altogether and focus on project management full time." Among the project manager's responsibilities, she says, are knowing project deadlines (and the consequences of failing to meet them), knowing when and where compromises are necessary, knowing "the tasks that need to be completed in order to get the project done, and … their interdependencies," managing communication among all members of a team, acting as a single source for all project information for senior management ("try to protect your team's time," she says), knowing and tracking the project budget, and keeping an "eye on your team's state of mind and availability."

Because she fell into the role, Wandering Scientist says she knows most researchers are less than enthusiastic about taking on the project manager's job. However, she adds, without project managers, "your projects will probably finish late and/or over budget, if they finish at all."

The Scan

Positive Framing of Genetic Studies Can Spark Mistrust Among Underrepresented Groups

Researchers in Human Genetics and Genomics Advances report that how researchers describe genomic studies may alienate potential participants.

Small Study of Gene Editing to Treat Sickle Cell Disease

In a Novartis-sponsored study in the New England Journal of Medicine, researchers found that a CRISPR-Cas9-based treatment targeting promoters of genes encoding fetal hemoglobin could reduce disease symptoms.

Gut Microbiome Changes Appear in Infants Before They Develop Eczema, Study Finds

Researchers report in mSystems that infants experienced an enrichment in Clostridium sensu stricto 1 and Finegoldia and a depletion of Bacteroides before developing eczema.

Acute Myeloid Leukemia Treatment Specificity Enhanced With Stem Cell Editing

A study in Nature suggests epitope editing in donor stem cells prior to bone marrow transplants can stave off toxicity when targeting acute myeloid leukemia with immunotherapy.