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That's Not Plastic Surgery, That's Genetic Variation

PZ Myers goes to great length on his blog at Pharyngula to explain a paper recently published by one of GT’s rising young investigators from last year, John Fondon. The paper examines how tandem repeats within the genome can affect morphology in domestic dogs. In particular, Fondon looked at 142 dogs from 92 different breeds; of the 37 different tandem repeats in 17 genes in each, they found 15 of the 17 genes had multiple alleles varying in the length of their repeats. Gene expression variation in two genes, Runx-2 and Alx-4, were correlated with craniofacial variation.

The Scan

Renewed Gain-of-Function Worries

The New York Times writes that the pandemic is renewing concerns about gain-of-function research.

Who's Getting the Patents?

A trio of researchers has analyzed gender trends in biomedical patents issued between 1976 and 2010 in the US, New Scientist reports.

Other Uses

CBS Sunday Morning looks at how mRNA vaccine technology could be applied beyond SARS-CoV-2.

PLOS Papers Present Analysis of Cervicovaginal Microbiome, Glycosylation in Model Archaea, More

In PLOS this week: functional potential of the cervicovaginal microbiome, glycosylation patterns in model archaea, and more.