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Regulate? Don't Regulate? Let's Do Both!

Will regulation of the direct-to-consumer genetic testing industry kill the personal genomics initiative, or will it protect consumers from companies with products of questionable value? To regulate or not to regulate has been the question on everyone's minds. Genomes Unzipped's Jeff Barrett and Katherine Morley say the solution should fall somewhere in the middle. While government regulation sometimes imposes a cost on innovation, it also enhances public safety, they write. The solution could be "light- or self-regulation on providing people with readouts of their genomes, but heavier regulation on selling a medical interpretation of those data." If consumers want to know what their genome is, and can pay for it, they should be able to get it. But if the companies are also selling a medical interpretation of the raw data, Morley and Barrett say, then they should be more heavily regulated.

The Scan

Missed Early Cases

A retrospective analysis of blood samples suggests early SARS-CoV-2 infections may have been missed in the US, the New York Times reports.

Limited Journal Editor Diversity

A survey finds low diversity among scientific and medical journal editors, according to The Scientist.

How Much of a Threat?

Science writes that need for a provision aimed at shoring up genomic data security within a new US bill is being questioned.

PNAS Papers on Historic Helicobacter Spread, Brain Development, C. difficile RNAs

In PNAS this week: Helicobacter genetic diversity gives insight into human migrations, gene expression patterns of brain development, and more.