The First Crop

Breakout Labs, which is funded by PayPal co-founder Peter Thiel, has issued its first round of grants to a range of scientific projects, reports the Nature News Blog. Among the six grantees are Positron Dynamics, which aims to use positrons in medical imaging or space travel, Longevity Biotech, which is using an artificial protein technology to develop drugs, and 3Scan, which is developing a 3D microscope to image the brain.

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Consulting company McKinsey says diagnostics companies will have to combine genomic data analysis, electronic medical records, effective reimbursement strategies, and regulatory compliance in order to win.

A new report has found that researchers in Africa are still heavily dependent on funding from organizations in the US, Europe, and China, Nature News says.

An article in The Atlantic argues that the progress being made in science isn't keeping pace with the money and time being spent on research.

In Science this week: a CRISPR screen identifies sideroflexin 1 as a requisite component of one-carbon metabolism, and more.