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Thinking Outside the Petroleum Box

An article in the New York Times talks about decreasing carbon emissions not only by driving less and using less energy, but also changing the way we derive chemicals for everyday products. Since a large number of the synthetic products used today are petroleum-based, "the effort to tap biomass for chemicals runs parallel to the higher-stakes research aimed at developing biofuels," the article says. Once the economic incentives win out, making bulk chemicals from renewable plant sources like corn and switchgrass will both save oil and reduce carbon emissions.

The Scan

Gone, But Now Reconstructed SARS-CoV-2 Genomes

In a preprint, a researcher describes his recovery of viral sequences that had been removed from a common database.

Rare Heart Inflammation Warning

The Food and Drug Administration is adding a warning about links between a rare inflammatory heart condition and two SARS-CoV-2 vaccines, Reuters reports.

Sandwich Sampling

The New York Times sent tuna sandwiches for PCR analysis.

Nature Papers Describe Gut Viruses, New Format for Storing Quantitative Genomic Data, More

In Nature this week: catalog of DNA viruses of the human gut microbiome, new dense depth data dump format to store quantitative genomic data, and more.