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Entangled DNA

Some physicists are suggesting that quantum entanglement — "the weird quantum process in which a single wavefunction describes two separate objects" — holds DNA together, reports the Physics arXiv Blog. The National University of Singapore's Elisabeth Rieper and her colleagues developed a simple model of DNA in which the four bases are planar, positively charged nuclei surrounded by electron clouds and movement of those clouds relative to the nuclei create dipoles, and if they moves back and forth, a harmonic oscillation. According to the Physics arXiv Blog Rieper's team then asks, "what happens to these oscillations … when the base pairs are stacked in a double helix?" A classical physics accounting of the energy holding DNA together, Rieper's team says, isn't enough as it is "energetically less favourable than the quantum correlations" and so they turned to quantum entanglement as a possible explanation. This work is "speculative but potentially explosive," adds the Physics arXiv Blog.

The Scan

Not Yet a Permanent One

NPR says the lack of a permanent Food and Drug Administration commissioner has "flummoxed" public health officials.

Unfair Targeting

Technology Review writes that a new report says the US has been unfairly targeting Chinese and Chinese-American individuals in economic espionage cases.

Limited Rapid Testing

The New York Times wonders why rapid tests for COVID-19 are not widely available in the US.

Genome Research Papers on IPAFinder, Structural Variant Expression Effects, Single-Cell RNA-Seq Markers

In Genome Research this week: IPAFinder method to detect intronic polyadenylation, influence of structural variants on gene expression, and more.