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Some Data to Play With

Both Keith Robison at Omics! Omics! and Dan Koboldt at Mass Genomics have been looking over data produced using Ion Torrent's 316 chip. Robison notes that the data set, a sequencing run of E. coli DH10B, contains 1.69 million reads, 1.53 million of which were 50 base pairs or longer. "No enormous gains in read length in this dataset, though the curve might be shifted towards longer," he writes, adding that the Broad Institute has been getting more than 2 million reads from its 316 chips. In addition, Koboldt calculated the average base quality of the first 1,600 reads. "You'll notice that, like early Illumina/Solexa data, average base quality declines along the length of the read," he says, noting that that these are variable-length reads. "Thus, it's possible that only the last few bases in each read are low-quality, which reduces the average score as you reach the end of the reads." He also found that substitutions were more likely to occur near the ends of the reads. "The 454-like homopolymer issue raises some concerns about using this platform for variant discovery," Koboldt adds. "Yet despite the errors, I'm impressed at how rapidly the technology has matured."

The Scan

Fertility Fraud Found

Consumer genetic testing has uncovered cases of fertility fraud that are leading to lawsuits, according to USA Today.

Ties Between Vigorous Exercise, ALS in Genetically At-Risk People

Regular strenuous exercise could contribute to motor neuron disease development among those already at genetic risk, Sky News reports.

Test Warning

The Guardian writes that the US regulators have warned against using a rapid COVID-19 test that is a key part of mass testing in the UK.

Science Papers Examine Feedback Mechanism Affecting Xist, Continuous Health Monitoring for Precision Medicine

In Science this week: analysis of cis confinement of the X-inactive specific transcript, and more.