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Going to the Extreme

In work published in Applied and Environmental Microbiology, scientists found extremophiles -- photoautotrophic microbial communities -- in the Atacama desert in Chile, the driest place on Earth and also the place that most resembles the conditions on Mars. If life could be found to exist here, the authors suppose, it could be found on Mars, too.

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The US Food and Drug Administration is to announce stricter standards for emergency authorizations of SARS-CoV-2 vaccines, reports the Washington Post.

The Associated Press reports Johnson & Johnson is starting a late-stage clinical trial of its candidate SARS-CoV-2 vaccine.

Bloomberg reports the budget of Operation Warp Speed is actually $18 billion, higher than the number typically cited.

In Genome Research this week: genomic analysis reveals role of super-spreaders in SARS-CoV-2, epigenetic drivers of cancer, and more.