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The Prospects

With news of the launch of Pacific Biosciences' SMRT machine, Keith Robison at Omics! Omics! takes a minute to blog about the company. There are few challenges that the company faces, he says, and the main one is meeting demand for machines. "The system has three salient positive characteristics which can sell machines: extremely long reads, relatively fast sample-to-sequence time, and the ability to directly detect modified or non-canonical bases.

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Moderna reports its vaccine is effective against new SARS-CoV-2 strains, though it is also developing a booster, according to the New York Times.

A new analysis suggests the B.1.1.7 strain of SARS-CoV-2 could be deadlier than previous ones, according to the Guardian.

NPR reports Merck is halting the development of its two candidate SARS-CoV-2 vaccines following disappointing Phase 1 results.

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