Work out of Jonathan Eisen's lab describes a tool they created to automatically compare gene sequences of small-subunit ribosomal RNA (ss-rRNA). Called ss-rRNA taxonomy and alignment pipeline (STAP), it can generate both high-quality multiple sequence alignments and phylogenetic trees, and can be used to study microbial species diversity in environmental samples. The paper was published in PLoS ONE.

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Researchers suggest that genetic variations could influence the side effects people experience when using synthetic cannabinoids, the International Business Times reports.

An analysis has examined the makeup of researchers on Twitter and what they share, Nature News reports.

At Stat News, Jim Kozubek argues that the Broad Institute is pushing the boundary of what a nonprofit is.

In PNAS this week: gut microbes may affect honeybee weight, phenotype and gene expression changes in DiGeorge syndrome, and more.