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Making Mistakes Is as Human as, Well, DNA

At the Discovering Biology in a Digital World blog, there's a post that questions the accuracy of DNA sequence reads. The author does a short experiment, calling the same short snippet of sequence once using phred and again using the ABI KB base calling program, but comes up with totally different graphs. Considering, as she writes in a previous post, the need for absolutely accurate data when it comes to, for instance, predicting disease predisposition, how can you be sure what you're looking at is a quality sequence?

The Scan

Pig Organ Transplants Considered

The Wall Street Journal reports that the US Food and Drug Administration may soon allow clinical trials that involve transplanting pig organs into humans.

'Poo-Bank' Proposal

Harvard Medical School researchers suggest people should bank stool samples when they are young to transplant when they later develop age-related diseases.

Spurred to Develop Again

New Scientist reports that researchers may have uncovered why about 60 percent of in vitro fertilization embryos stop developing.

Science Papers Examine Breast Milk Cell Populations, Cerebral Cortex Cellular Diversity, Micronesia Population History

In Science this week: unique cell populations found within breast milk, 100 transcriptionally distinct cell populations uncovered in the cerebral cortex, and more.