Skip to main content
Premium Trial:

Request an Annual Quote

Students' Sequence Won't Face Peer Review

Nature News discusses the controversy surrounding India's Open Source Drug Discovery project's April 11 announcement that its researchers have "comprehensively mapped, compiled, and verified the genome of Myobacterium tuberculosis," and was the first to make it publicly available. Criticism of the project is widespread, Nature reports, and is subject to three main arguments: both the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute in the UK and the Broad Institute in the US have made M. tuberculosis genomes publicly available, the OSDD has no plans to subject their annotations to peer-review, and an undisclosed amount of the project was completed in about four months by about 400 college students. "Annotation is a challenging job requiring specialists, and I doubt if students with little experience can do this," John Quackenbush at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute tells Nature. "It is unfortunate the Indian group made these claims before outsiders had a chance to review the students' data. The worst thing you can do to your country is to oversell your science." Some researchers, however, have expressed their support for the initiative. Stanford's Gary Schoolnik tells Nature that his group supports the Indian approach, including having student annotate the genome.

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.