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Fooled You!

Researchers have found a way to turn fully formed cells into other kinds of tissue without needing to revert the cells back to an embryonic stem cell state first, reports Malcolm Ritter at the Associated Press. "It's like flying direct rather than scheduling a stopover," he adds. This direct conversion method may one day allow doctors to coax tissue cells into changing their type in order to repair damaged organs from within the body, Ritter says, but for now researchers say the method is a more efficient means of producing specialized cells in the lab than using embryonic stem cells, which are fraught with controversy and are difficult to use. In order to "trick" the cells into changing type, the researchers insert chemical signals to activate particular genes and suppress others, Ritter says. There's still a lot of work that needs to be done before these cells can be used medically, he adds, but some researchers say this method is the future of stem cell science.

The Scan

US Booster Eligibility Decision

The US CDC director recommends that people at high risk of developing COVID-19 due to their jobs also be eligible for COVID-19 boosters, in addition to those 65 years old and older or with underlying medical conditions.

Arizona Bill Before Judge

The Arizona Daily Star reports that a judge is weighing whether a new Arizona law restricting abortion due to genetic conditions is a ban or a restriction.

Additional Genes

Wales is rolling out new genetic testing service for cancer patients, according to BBC News.

Science Papers Examine State of Human Genomic Research, Single-Cell Protein Quantification

In Science this week: a number of editorials and policy reports discuss advances in human genomic research, and more.