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Synthetic Biology Catches Obama's Eye

Researchers everywhere are gazing in awe at Craig Venter's latest achievement in synthetic biology. But the scientific community isn't the only one paying attention. President Obama is also keeping an eye on science, and has asked his bioethics commission to take a look at Venter's work and report back to him, says ScienceInsider. In the letter, addressed to commission chair Amy Gutmann, Obama asks the commission to do a six-month study on benefits and risks of the research to medicine, the environment, and national security and then report their findings and recommendations back to him, ScienceInsider says. "It is vital that we as a society consider, in a thoughtful manner, the significance of this kind of scientific development," Obama writes.

The Scan

Call to Look Again

More than a dozen researchers penned a letter in Science saying a previous investigation into the origin of SARS-CoV-2 did not give theories equal consideration.

Not Always Trusted

In a new poll, slightly more than half of US adults have a great deal or quite a lot of trust in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Hill reports.

Identified Decades Later

A genetic genealogy approach has identified "Christy Crystal Creek," the New York Times reports.

Science Papers Report on Splicing Enhancer, Point of Care Test for Sexual Transmitted Disease

In Science this week: a novel RNA structural element that acts as a splicing enhancer, and more.