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Japan Plans Science Institute

The Japanese government is planning to build a new, publicly-financed university in Okinawa dedicated to science, reports the Chronicle of Higher Education's David McNeill. The Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology will be headed by Stanford University particle physicist Jonathan Dorfan, classes will be given in English, and the faculty will be at least half non-Japanese. "It is an attempt to build an entirely new graduate institute that will attract the brightest minds from around the world," McNeill says, adding that it's also Japan's answer to critics that say the country's universities are failing to internationalize and are falling behind the rest of Asia. The school, which is scheduled to open in 2012, will offer classes in neuroscience, developmental biology, and marine science and ecology, he adds. In an interview with McNeill, Dorfan calls the venture "bold," and says it's a chance to promote international and interdisciplinary research and education.

The Scan

Booster for At-Risk

The New York Times reports that the US Food and Drug Administration has authorized a third dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech SARS-CoV-2 vaccine for people 65 and older or at increased risk.

Preprints OK to Mention Again

Nature News reports the Australian Research Council has changed its new policy and now allows preprints to be cited in grant applications.

Hundreds of Millions More to Share

The US plans to purchase and donate 500 million additional SARS-CoV-2 vaccine doses, according to the Washington Post.

Nature Papers Examine Molecular Program Differences Influencing Neural Cells, Population History of Polynesia

In Nature this week: changes in molecular program during embryonic development leads to different neural cell types, and more.