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New guidelines are being introduced in the US for companies that supply "custom DNA," in order to guard against bioterrorists looking to build dangerous viruses from the genes up, says the New Scientist. Several firms supply DNA sequences to order, and as the New Scientist reported in 2005, only five out of the 12 that do so in North America and Europe screened every order for sequences that could be used in bioweapons.

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A survey by Nature finds that most researchers want scientific meetings to continue virtually or with a virtual component, even after the pandemic ends.

Bloomberg reports that the B.1.351 SARS-CoV-2 viral variant could prompt the formulation of better vaccines.

Certain blood proteins may be able to distinguish COVID-19 patients who will become critically ill from those who will not, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.

In Genome Biology this week: algorithm to assess regulatory features, approach to integrate multiple single-cell RNA-seq datasets, and more.