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Couldn't They Have Chosen Nice Memories?

Here's a story from the New York Times reporting on work from Gero Miesenböck at the University of Oxford and published recently in Cell. In the study, the biologists used light to activate a group of cells in the fly brain to lay down a bad memory and assess how flies respond to the reminder of a negative experience. "Dr. Miesenböck’s team was able to distinguish, by their genetics, different classes of the dopamine-making neurons. By tagging each class of neurons with a gene that makes a fluorescent protein, they could make the dopamine neurons light up and they could trace their circuitry," the article says. "Only one class, consisting of just 12 neurons, made the right connections in the fly’s brain to function in learning shock avoidance."

The Scan

Tens of Millions Saved

The Associated Press writes that vaccines against COVID-19 saved an estimated 20 million lives in their first year.

Supersized Bacterium

NPR reports that researchers have found and characterized a bacterium that is visible to the naked eye.

Also Subvariants

Moderna says its bivalent SARS-CoV-2 vaccine leads to a strong immune response against Omicron subvariants, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Science Papers Present Gene-Edited Mouse Models of Liver Cancer, Hürthle Cell Carcinoma Analysis

In Science this week: a collection of mouse models of primary liver cancer, and more.