The US Patent and Trademark Office is holding two hearings — one this week and other in March — to gather information on "independent second opinion genetic diagnostic testing" on genes that are already patented or exclusively licensed by other companies, reports Patent Docs' Donald Zuhn. USPTO is planning to gather the information it receives from the hearings and make a report to Congress.

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Researchers have treated an X-linked genetic disease affecting three babies in utero, Stat News reports.

The Associated Press reports that the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is beefing up sequencing as a tool to investigate foodborne illnesses.

Researchers have sequenced samples from ancient toilets to study past eating habits and health, NPR reports.

In Nature this week: ash dieback disease fungal genome, and more.