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Make Way for CalIBR

Merck this week launched the California Institute for Biomedical Research, or CalIBR, "a new nonprofit research institute to help academics turn their basic biology insights into drug compounds ready for human tests," Science reports, adding that the pharmaceutical company is contributing $42 million over the first three years, and possibly as much as $90 million over the first seven years, to the institute.

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The US Food and Drug Administration is to announce stricter standards for emergency authorizations of SARS-CoV-2 vaccines, reports the Washington Post.

The Associated Press reports Johnson & Johnson is starting a late-stage clinical trial of its candidate SARS-CoV-2 vaccine.

Bloomberg reports the budget of Operation Warp Speed is actually $18 billion, higher than the number typically cited.

In Genome Research this week: genomic analysis reveals role of super-spreaders in SARS-CoV-2, epigenetic drivers of cancer, and more.