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At the World Science Festival in New York, Neil deGrasse Tyson, an astrophysicist and director of the Hayden Planetarium, says that being scientifically literate protect people from charlatans and others who want to take advantage of their ignorance. "You don't have to be a scientist but at least understand what is going on in the world," he says, adding that "scientific decisions inform political decisions."

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Nature News writes that additional details about the UK plan for an agency to support high-risk, high-reward science are needed.

The New York Times reports that the US Food and Drug Administration has authorized Johnson & Johnson's SARS-CoV-2 vaccine.

The Wall Street Journal writes new studies are giving glimpses into the origins of SARS-CoV-2.

In PLOS this week: analysis of Plasmodium population structure, qPCR assay to diagnose scabies, and more.