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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. Then it has two huge handicaps: the pricetag and the low (~80%) single-pass accuracy (the monster size and weight aren't a plus, but if you really need a machine you'll create the space!)," Robison writes. One way that Robison says PacBio can help itself out is by publishing more papers to show the variety of projects the machine can be useful for.

The Scan

Not Yet a Permanent One

NPR says the lack of a permanent Food and Drug Administration commissioner has "flummoxed" public health officials.

Unfair Targeting

Technology Review writes that a new report says the US has been unfairly targeting Chinese and Chinese-American individuals in economic espionage cases.

Limited Rapid Testing

The New York Times wonders why rapid tests for COVID-19 are not widely available in the US.

Genome Research Papers on IPAFinder, Structural Variant Expression Effects, Single-Cell RNA-Seq Markers

In Genome Research this week: IPAFinder method to detect intronic polyadenylation, influence of structural variants on gene expression, and more.