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Has Anyone Seen the Superglue?

At the Naturally Selected blog, Boise State University researcher Morgan Giddings says science is "broken," but that there is a way to fix it. Some of the greatest scientific innovations of the past century were endeavors that took years of work to accomplish, but the emphasis at many universities these days seems to be on "translation" — and fast, Giddings says. "It seems like the whole endeavor has lost sight of the fact that all innovation and science takes time," she adds. There are several problems that make universities poorly equipped to reach the goal of fast translation — problems like bureaucracy, science by committee, and the "mixed mission" of a university that requires it to play a large array of roles, she says. "The whole system has gone berserk, and needs to get back to basics. The basics are simple: good people doing great innovative research, and then letting companies or institutes step in to do the translational part," Giddings says. The structure of funding science must change from one where short-term projects are funded one by one, to one where scientists are funded "to go innovate" without having to justify every move to a committee, she says. And, importantly, science needs to start being fun again. "Science should enrich and inspire people, especially younger generations," she says.

The Scan

Tens of Millions Saved

The Associated Press writes that vaccines against COVID-19 saved an estimated 20 million lives in their first year.

Supersized Bacterium

NPR reports that researchers have found and characterized a bacterium that is visible to the naked eye.

Also Subvariants

Moderna says its bivalent SARS-CoV-2 vaccine leads to a strong immune response against Omicron subvariants, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Science Papers Present Gene-Edited Mouse Models of Liver Cancer, Hürthle Cell Carcinoma Analysis

In Science this week: a collection of mouse models of primary liver cancer, and more.