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Going, Going, Gone?

At the Mermaid's Tale blog, Ken Weiss wonders whether whole-genome sequencing is "fading." There are various indicators — like a recent blog post from Carl Zimmer on his "genome fatigue" — that both researchers and the public are "losing enthusiasm for human whole-genome sequencing," Weiss says.

He adds that a colleague who sits on an NIH grant review panel tells him this particular group is reluctant to fund any more genome-wide association studies. "If this turns out to be more than a few anecdotes or personal opinions, and is actually occurring, it's understandable and to be lauded," Weiss says. "As we think we can truthfully claim, we have for years been warning of the dangers of the kind of overkill that genomics (and, indeed, other 'omics fads) present: promise miracles and you had better deliver!"

In Weiss' opinion, money should be spent on looking at specific problem-causing genes. "The instances of single-gene or major-mutation causation are numerous and real," he adds. "At present, whole-genome sequence data provide too much variation for us to deal with on adequate terms."

That doesn't mean the end of whole-genome sequencing, however. "Whether that will be a rebound towards good science, or a relapse of low payoff, is a matter of opinion," Weiss says.

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.