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A Gift from Merck

Open Access News highlights a recent blog post by John Wilbanks, announcing that Merck will establish a nonprofit called Sage to create an open-access database about the biology of disease, as well as software tools to use it. According to Wilbanks, who is on the founding board of directors for Sage, "It's not about making a quick data dump onto the web, however. Sage is going to take a while during an 'incubation period of three to five years...in which new project data are generated, critical tools for building and mining disease models are developed and governing rules for sharing, accessing, and contributing to the platform are established,'" he writes.

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.