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Not Just One of the Plagues

Model organisms get a mention as the New York Times speaks with Cambridge University's Jeremy Niven about his work on locusts — Niven says that insects can help researchers better parse out the nervous system. "We have not discovered yet the neural circuits in humans that are involved in reaching for objects. However, we might be able to work that out in locusts," he says. "We already know that it doesn't take a huge brain to accurately control the limbs. These insects do it. There are all kinds of possibilities for robotics and for rehabilitative medicine in these studies."

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.