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'p53 is Seeing a Shrink!'

A short story by the Weizmann Institute of Science's Peter Tsvetkov and Tel-Aviv University's Sharon Dekel posted at LabLit this week details a personified p53's visit with a "gene therapist." The transcription factor, it seems, is at odds with his roles in cancer and apoptosis. "When I was first discovered they accused me of being oncogenic, accused me of supporting cancer. It took them many years to understand that I am the good guy, that I'm a tumor suppressor. But since then I have been under tight surveillance: every little thing I do is watched ... like anyone, I have my weak spots," a distressed p53 tells his therapist. "From hearing your story, what sounds especially difficult for you is how to handle these transitions from being the guardian of the genome to the cause of cancer," the therapist says, adding that "there's a lot of work ahead" to determine the motivations behind the transcription factor's behavior.

The Scan

Highly Similar

Researchers have uncovered bat viruses that are highly similar to SARS-CoV-2, according to Nature News.

Gain of Oversight

According to the Wall Street Journal, the Biden Administration is considering greater oversight of gain-of-function research.

Lasker for mRNA Vaccine Work

The Scientist reports that researchers whose work enabled the development of mRNA-based vaccines are among this year's Lasker Award winners

PLOS Papers on Causal Variant Mapping, Ancient Salmonella, ALK Fusion Test for NSCLC

In PLOS this week: MsCAVIAR approach to map causal variants, analysis of ancient Salmonella, and more.