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Sweeter Dates

Together, Weill Cornell Medical College in Qatar and the Qatar Ministry of Environment's Biotechnology Center are launching a program focused on date palm research, reports Nature Middle East's House of Wisdom blog. The Date Palm Research Program is to include both basic and applied research into the date palm, whose fruit is a dietary staple in the Middle East. The Qatar National Research Fund will provide $4.5 million over five years as seed funding for the program, the House of Wisdom blog says, adding that researchers at Weill Cornell Medical College in Qatar developed a draft genome of the date palm a few years ago.

"What we aim at now is to translate our basic research know-how into real-world applications," says Karsten Suhre from Weill Cornell Medical College in Qatar.

The Scan

Call to Look Again

More than a dozen researchers penned a letter in Science saying a previous investigation into the origin of SARS-CoV-2 did not give theories equal consideration.

Not Always Trusted

In a new poll, slightly more than half of US adults have a great deal or quite a lot of trust in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Hill reports.

Identified Decades Later

A genetic genealogy approach has identified "Christy Crystal Creek," the New York Times reports.

Science Papers Report on Splicing Enhancer, Point of Care Test for Sexual Transmitted Disease

In Science this week: a novel RNA structural element that acts as a splicing enhancer, and more.