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The Next Big Thing

There was once a time that researchers had to be convinced that molecular population genetics was useful, says Mike the Mad Biologist. Once the field became popular, the "early adopters" who were regularly using PCR and clone-based sequences were "hot intellectual commodities" — that is until the field became overcrowded, and nearly every department already had a molecular population geneticist. A few years before that, Mike says, there was a similar phenomenon in marine biology with clonal invertebrate biologists. So which niche is next? According to Mike, it's bacterial population genomics. "Over the next 12 to 36 months, we will be swamped with thousands of bacterial genomes. … Anyone who can come up with interesting ways to analyze hundreds of relatively similar genomes at once will be in great demand," he says. Should history repeat itself, this window of opportunity will only be open for a couple of years before "crowding" occurs, so if you're interested, Mike says, get in now.

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.