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If you think you can't live without caffeine, take a look at the newly-described bacteria, Pseudomonas putida CBB5, says Katherine Harmon at the Scientific American Observations blog. These organisms feed on pure caffeine, University of Iowa researchers say, by using specialized enzymes to break it up into carbon dioxide and ammonia.

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President-elect Joe Biden has nominated Eric Lander to serve as director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy, the Associated Press says.

Nature News writes that scientists are trying to figure out how to name the new strains of SARS-CoV-2 that are emerging.

The New York Times reports that researchers are studying identical twins who had COVID-19 to understand the influence of genetics on disease severity.

In PNAS this week: epistasis affecting cystic fibrosis, Tiger rattlesnake genome gives venom insight, and more.