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Keeping an Eye on the Plants

"It's like watching a plant grow" was set to become the botanical research community's version of "It's like watching cement harden" — that is, until researchers at the University of Wisconsin-Madison created a robotic camera to watch the plants for them, reports Popular Science's Rebecca Boyle. Plant physiologist Edgar Spalding created a "2,300-pound, 6-foot-high robotic camera rig snaps pictures every 30 seconds, capturing the curling, twisting motion of germinating seeds putting out new roots," she says. Observing plants develop with these new cameras can help researchers determine the differences between genetically modified and wild-type specimens, particularly by how the roots develop, Boyle says, adding that Spalding and his colleagues hope their research could help investigators genetically engineer crops with desirable features.

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.