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Scary Yet Cool

This New Yorker story looks into synthetic biology, particularly the work of Berkeley's Jay Keasling and Stanford's Drew Endy. Both say that one goal of their work is to make interchangeable parts that can be swapped in and out of a cell — like a hard drive, as Keasling puts it. However, some of what is proposed, namely creating new forms of life or designing children, gives people pause. Why? "Because it's scary as hell," Endy says. "It's the coolest platform science has ever produced, but the questions it raises are the hardest to answer."

The Scan

NFTs for Genome Sharing

Nature News writes that non-fungible tokens could be a way for people to profit from sharing genomic data.

Wastewater Warning System

Time magazine writes that cities and college campuses are monitoring sewage for SARS-CoV-2, an approach officials hope lasts beyond COVID-19.

Networks to Boost Surveillance

Scientific American writes that new organizations and networks aim to improve the ability of developing countries to conduct SARS-CoV-2 genomic surveillance.

Genome Biology Papers on Gastric Cancer Epimutations, BUTTERFLY, GUNC Tool

In Genome Biology this week: recurrent epigenetic mutations in gastric cancer, correction tool for unique molecular identifier-based assays, and more.