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On Course for a 'Tumultuous Year'

He may never be called a maverick, but in this article from the LA Times, Francis Collins gets his due as a "gene hunter." Collins, who was in LA to receive the Will Rogers Institute's prize for lung research, talks in this interview about the Cancer Genome Atlas, his work with progeria, and his path from atheism to religious belief. GTO particularly liked the question about whether consumers are ready for the coming wave of personal genomics with the launch of 23andMe, Navigenics, and others. Collins responded:

I predict it's going to be a tumultuous year. People will get confused. They're going to get a printout that says, "Your risk of diabetes is 30% higher than somebody else's," and they'll take it to their physician and say, "What should I do?" Most medical professionals aren't ready for this. It's not yes-no stuff. It's statistical risk.

 

The Scan

Alzheimer's Risk Gene Among Women

CNN reports that researchers have found that variants in MGMT contribute to Alzheimer's disease risk among women but not men.

Still Hanging Around

The Guardian writes that persistent pockets of SARS-CoV-2 in the body could contribute to long COVID.

Through a Little Spit

Enteric viruses like norovirus may also be transmitted through saliva, not just the fecal-oral route, according to New Scientist.

Nature Papers Present Method to Detect Full Transcriptome, Viruses Infecting Asgard Archaea, More

In Nature this week: VASA-seq approach to detect full transcriptome, analysis of viruses infecting Asgard archaea, and more.