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'Government Sources' Confirm Varmus Will Head NCI

Science Insider and the Wall Street Journal's health blog are both speculating about the possibility that Nobel laureate Harold Varmus — former director of the National Institutes of Health — will soon be named director of the National Cancer Institute. Rumors that Varmus would soon head up NCI began shortly after he issued a public letter saying he had asked Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center's board to begin looking for his successor as president, according to the WSJ. According to D.C.-based newsletter The Cancer Letter, "multiple sources in the federal government and outside it confirmed that the announcement appears imminent." On March 7, Science ran a story in which Varmus denied that he would become director of the NCI, calling the rumors "far-fetched."

The Scan

Genetic Tests Lead to Potential Prognostic Variants in Dutch Children With Dilated Cardiomyopathy

Researchers in Circulation: Genomic and Precision Medicine found that the presence of pathogenic or likely pathogenic variants was linked to increased risk of death and poorer outcomes in children with pediatric dilated cardiomyopathy.

Fragile X Syndrome Mutations Found With Comprehensive Testing Method

Researchers in Clinical Chemistry found fragile X syndrome expansions and other FMR1 mutations with ties to the intellectual disability condition using a long-range PCR and long-read sequencing approach.

Team Presents Strategy for Speedy Species Detection in Metagenomic Sequence Data

A computational approach presented in PLOS Computational Biology produced fewer false-positive species identifications in simulated and authentic metagenomic sequences.

Genetic Risk Factors for Hypertension Can Help Identify Those at Risk for Cardiovascular Disease

Genetically predicted high blood pressure risk is also associated with increased cardiovascular disease risk, a new JAMA Cardiology study says.