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But the Real Question Is, Will There Be a 'Buy It Now' Option?

We couldn't make this stuff up if we tried. The New York Times reports that Knome will use eBay to auction off an opportunity to get your genome sequenced. The auction, scheduled to begin tomorrow, is supposed to open at $68,000 -- a significant drop from the sequencing service's list price of $99,000. NYT, which characterizes the auction as "a publicity stunt," notes that "at present the information has little value — even for a low-ball bid of $68,000." Knome is sweetening the pot by including a private dinner with George Church, and proceeds will go to the X Prize Foundation.

Daniel MacArthur at Genetic Future is already blogging about this, saying that "even the opening bid of $68,000 is way too high" -- in part because the current cost trends in sequencing means that waiting a couple of months "will likely save you tens of thousands of dollars."

Still, a one-on-one dinner with George? That might be worth the asking price on its own.

The Scan

Pig Organ Transplants Considered

The Wall Street Journal reports that the US Food and Drug Administration may soon allow clinical trials that involve transplanting pig organs into humans.

'Poo-Bank' Proposal

Harvard Medical School researchers suggest people should bank stool samples when they are young to transplant when they later develop age-related diseases.

Spurred to Develop Again

New Scientist reports that researchers may have uncovered why about 60 percent of in vitro fertilization embryos stop developing.

Science Papers Examine Breast Milk Cell Populations, Cerebral Cortex Cellular Diversity, Micronesia Population History

In Science this week: unique cell populations found within breast milk, 100 transcriptionally distinct cell populations uncovered in the cerebral cortex, and more.