What do adult Quidditch games, a theme park at Universal Studios in Florida, countless knockoffs, and biomedical research have in common? They were all inspired by J.K. Rowling's phenomenally popular Harry Potter series, says the Hartford Courant's William Weir. For more than 10 years, researchers have used the Potter series as a starting point for studies on genetics, social cognition, and autism.

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A new study in JAMA finds that genetic tests might not be able to determine what diet is right for someone seeking to lose weight.

A genome-wide association study that linked common genetic variants to salivary gland carcinoma risk has been retracted, according to Retraction Watch.

Vampire bats' ability to live off blood is etched in their genomes and gut microbiomes, the Scientist reports.

In Genome Biology this week: peopling of the Sahara, epigenetic reprogramming analysis of liverwort, and more.