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That's What You Call a Double Whammy

A recent article in Nature News describes how Leonid Margulis was trying to grow HIV in tonsil tissue infected with herpes, but he couldn't sustain the HIV infection. (Co-infection seems to accelerate HIV progression in people.)  This strain of herpes (HHV-6) blocks the CCR5 receptors that HIV uses to enter cells -- exerting a selective pressure on HIV that makes it more virulent. "These results emphasize the importance of doing experiments under conditions that closely resemble real world cases, rather than in sterile lab cultures," blogs John Dennehy (aka the Evilutionary Biologist).

The Scan

Billions for Antivirals

The US is putting $3.2 billion toward a program to develop antivirals to treat COVID-19 in its early stages, the Wall Street Journal reports.

NFT of the Web

Tim Berners-Lee, who developed the World Wide Web, is auctioning its original source code as a non-fungible token, Reuters reports.

23andMe on the Nasdaq

23andMe's shares rose more than 20 percent following its merger with a special purpose acquisition company, as GenomeWeb has reported.

Science Papers Present GWAS of Brain Structure, System for Controlled Gene Transfer

In Science this week: genome-wide association study ties variants to white matter stricture in the brain, and more.