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So That's What You've Been Doing All This Time

Following a recent meeting at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, a perspectives piece by a group of researchers appearing it this month's Genes and Development gives a definition for epigenetics, saying that "an epigenetic trait is a stably heritable phenotype resulting from changes in a chromosome without alterations in the DNA sequence." They also postulate that there are three types of signals that work in concert to establish an epigenetic state: the "epigenator" signal from the environment, the "epigenetic initiator" that responds to the epigenator and find the proper chromatin region, and the "epigenetic maintainer" that upholds the chromatin environment.

The Scan

CDC Calls Delta "Variant of Concern"

CNN reports the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention now considers the Delta variant of SARS-CoV-2 to be a "variant of concern."

From FDA to Venture Capital

Former FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn is taking a position at a venture capital firm, leading some ethicists to raise eyebrows, according to the Washington Post.

Consent Questions

Nature News writes that there are questions whether informed consent was obtained for some submissions to a database of Y-chromosome profiles.

Cell Studies on Multimodal Single-Cell Analysis, Coronaviruses in Bats, Urban Microbiomes

In Cell this week: approach to analyze multimodal single-cell genomic data, analysis of bat coronaviruses, and more.