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Peer Review Project

There's an online survey, Writedit reports, from the University of North Texas' Center for the Study of Interdisciplinarity asking: "What is the best way to incorporate societal impacts considerations into the grant proposal peer review process?" The project, called the Comparative Assessment of Peer Review, is funded by the National Science Foundation to study peer review at three US agencies — NSF, the National Institutes of Health, and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration — and three foreign agencies — the Natural Science and Engineering Research Council of Canada, the European Commission, and the Dutch Technology Foundation. "Probably not entirely what you might expect, but still an interesting thought exercise with plenty of opportunity to enter free-text comments and input," Writedit says.

The Scan

Study Finds Sorghum Genetic Loci Influencing Composition, Function of Human Gut Microbes

Focusing on microbes found in the human gut microbiome, researchers in Nature Communications identified 10 sorghum loci that appear to influence the microbial taxa or microbial metabolite features.

Treatment Costs May Not Coincide With R&D Investment, Study Suggests

Researchers in JAMA Network Open did not find an association between ultimate treatment costs and investments in a drug when they analyzed available data on 60 approved drugs.

Sleep-Related Variants Show Low Penetrance in Large Population Analysis

A limited number of variants had documented sleep effects in an investigation in PLOS Genetics of 10 genes with reported sleep ties in nearly 192,000 participants in four population studies.

Researchers Develop Polygenic Risk Scores for Dozens of Disease-Related Exposures

With genetic data from two large population cohorts and summary statistics from prior genome-wide association studies, researchers came up with 27 exposure polygenic risk scores in the American Journal of Human Genetics.