The Academies Act in the UK has passed through Parliament and is now law, says Imran Khan at the New Scientist's The S Word blog. Its purpose is to expand the number of schools that could become semi-independent, says Khan, but the law also removes the obligation of these school (called academies, and seemingly run like charter schools in the US) to teach science and math in line with the National Curriculum.

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CNBC reports that Amazon invested in the startup Grail as it sees an opportunity for its cloud computing company in genomics.

Lawrence Krauss writes at Slate that science is needed for good public policy and should not be ignored.

Researchers are working on re-making the yeast genome from scratch, according to the Associated Press.

In Cell this week: functional profiling of Plasmodium genome, a self-inactivating rabies virus, and more.