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The Medical College of Wisconsin won a $13 million, five-year NIH grant to build a computer model of a rat, report the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel's Mark Johnson and Kathleen Gallagher. Humans and rats share about 90 percent of their genes, including many disease genes, making the rat a useful experimental animal model.

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The Hill reports President Donald Trump issued an executive directing federal agencies to cut the number of board and advisory committees they have.

The New York Times reports that researchers are combining tools to more quickly develop crops to feed a growing population and cope with shifting climates.

Scientists in Canada are looking to the UK's plan to sequence children with rare conditions for inspiration, the National Post reports.

In PNAS this week: copy number changes arose during polar bear evolution, genomic and transcriptomic analysis of the Siberian hamster, and more.