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Delving into Personal Genomics

The journal Personalized Medicine has a special issue with articles focusing on personal genomics, assembled by Elaine Mardis and Jeantine Lunshof. In their introduction, they say that "genome-based personalized medicine is no longer a thought experiment and the course of both disease research and medical practice will be substantially altered as a result" and that "the ethical, legal and societal implications of the developments in the genomic sciences cannot be ignored and require ongoing assessment."

In an editorial, James Watson recounts his experience being the first person to have his genome sequenced with next-gen tools. He describes his worry for his granddaughters at seeing a nonsynonymous base pair change in his BRCA1 gene — he consulted Mary-Claire King and was reassured that it was nondisease-causing. He also wonders "whether Craig Venter will later regret that he and the whole world knows that he possesses one copy of the Alzheimer's predisposing apolipoprotein E4 allele remains," he writes. "Being 20 years older, I instinctively saw that my APOEgene sequence was not revealed to me or later put on the web. I continue to live as if I will not be victimized in my 90s, as was my Irish grandmother, with this most pernicious brain-destroying affliction."

Other articles tackle sequencing cancer genomes, consumer genomics, the personal genome project, and more.

The Scan

CDC Calls Delta "Variant of Concern"

CNN reports the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention now considers the Delta variant of SARS-CoV-2 to be a "variant of concern."

From FDA to Venture Capital

Former FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn is taking a position at a venture capital firm, leading some ethicists to raise eyebrows, according to the Washington Post.

Consent Questions

Nature News writes that there are questions whether informed consent was obtained for some submissions to a database of Y-chromosome profiles.

Cell Studies on Multimodal Single-Cell Analysis, Coronaviruses in Bats, Urban Microbiomes

In Cell this week: approach to analyze multimodal single-cell genomic data, analysis of bat coronaviruses, and more.