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Genes? There's an App for That

Researchers at Penn State have created a new smartphone app called "TimeTree," an interactive interface that tracks the evolution of genes throughout Earth's history. The comparative biology application draws on the vast amounts of data on the Internet about the diverse genes of Earth's organisms, allowing users to see how long ago two species may have shared a common ancestor, the researchers say in a press release. The user types in the names of two organisms, and the app searches its database to find how long ago they shared an ancestor, while along the side of the display, the app also shows a geological timescale with data points marking the various studies used to reach the result. The researchers have also created a video which explains how "TimeTree" works.

The Scan

For Better Odds

Bloomberg reports that a child has been born following polygenic risk score screening as an embryo.

Booster Decision Expected

The New York Times reports the US Food and Drug Administration is expected to authorize a booster dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech SARS-CoV-2 vaccine this week for individuals over 65 or at high risk.

Snipping HIV Out

The Philadelphia Inquirer reports Temple University researchers are to test a gene-editing approach for treating HIV.

PLOS Papers on Cancer Risk Scores, Typhoid Fever in Colombia, Streptococcus Protection

In PLOS this week: application of cancer polygenic risk scores across ancestries, genetic diversity of typhoid fever-causing Salmonella, and more.