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Promoting Science, Sun King-Style

In 1686, a surgeon was called to remove an anal fistula from Louis XIV of France — something he most likely did with a modified barber's razor, as surgeons of the time belonged to the same profession as barbers and wigmakers, says New Scientist's CultureLab. A new exhibition at the Palace of Versailles shows Louis XIV to have been a supporter of the sciences, as he established a national academy of sciences in 1666 and oversaw the beginning of more than a century of scientific development. His great-grandson, Louis XV, and his great-great-great-grandson, Louis XVI, continued the tradition of promoting the sciences, right up until the French Revolution at the end of the 18th century, CultureLab says. They oversaw discoveries and inventions in botany, midwifery, veterinary science, and world exploration. The Academy of Sciences was "another victim of the revolution," CultureLab adds, but it was reborn in 1795 and still endures to this day in France — and finally saw surgery become its own profession practiced by trained professionals on equal footing with physicians.

The Scan

CDC Calls Delta "Variant of Concern"

CNN reports the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention now considers the Delta variant of SARS-CoV-2 to be a "variant of concern."

From FDA to Venture Capital

Former FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn is taking a position at a venture capital firm, leading some ethicists to raise eyebrows, according to the Washington Post.

Consent Questions

Nature News writes that there are questions whether informed consent was obtained for some submissions to a database of Y-chromosome profiles.

Cell Studies on Multimodal Single-Cell Analysis, Coronaviruses in Bats, Urban Microbiomes

In Cell this week: approach to analyze multimodal single-cell genomic data, analysis of bat coronaviruses, and more.