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Live from Philadelphia, It's ASHG

GTO's caffeinating up and bracing for a jam-packed day here at ASHG in Philadelphia. Some interesting info on the personal genomics front: at a talk this morning in the genomics track, NHGRI's Les Biesecker updated attendees on the ClinSeq project, saying that one of the main challenges so far is that the team can't keep up with demand from volunteers who want in on a project that may one day extend to whole-genome sequencing of its participants. Guess that answers the question of whether the general public finds this appealing.

Of course, data analysis has been another problem. "We are generating data at a rate that is much faster than our ability to analyze it," Biesecker said. In the works for ClinSeq:

  • Expanding diversity of its cohort
  • Migrating to next-gen sequencing platforms

The project is still in its candidate gene sequencing phase. After that, Biesecker said, the goal is to move to full exome sequencing for participants and eventually to whole-genome sequencing.

 

The Scan

Renewed Gain-of-Function Worries

The New York Times writes that the pandemic is renewing concerns about gain-of-function research.

Who's Getting the Patents?

A trio of researchers has analyzed gender trends in biomedical patents issued between 1976 and 2010 in the US, New Scientist reports.

Other Uses

CBS Sunday Morning looks at how mRNA vaccine technology could be applied beyond SARS-CoV-2.

PLOS Papers Present Analysis of Cervicovaginal Microbiome, Glycosylation in Model Archaea, More

In PLOS this week: functional potential of the cervicovaginal microbiome, glycosylation patterns in model archaea, and more.