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A Time to Air Grievances

The US National Institutes of Health's Advisory Committee to the Director has issued a request for information about the future of the biomedical workforce, says Sally Rockey the deputy director for extramural research at NIH at her Rock Talk blog. Or, as blogger DrugMonkey says in the title to his post on the RFI, "It's GO time, disgruntle-docs and disgruntle-profs!" In the RFI, NIH asks for feedback on the supply and demand of PhDs, the length of both PhD and postdoc training, the effect of NIH policy changes on the research environment, and more.

At his blog, DrugMonkey shares one of his suggestions — to create a K mechanism to provide salary support for career scientists and thus create a more stable career path for non-faculty, PhD scientists. He calls this idea a "medium" level suggestion. "I'm not saying that you can't go big. The NIH definitely needs to field some outside-the-box thinking on this. But give small and medium suggestions too," he advises his readers.

Responses to the RFI are being accepted through October 7.

The Scan

Highly Similar

Researchers have uncovered bat viruses that are highly similar to SARS-CoV-2, according to Nature News.

Gain of Oversight

According to the Wall Street Journal, the Biden Administration is considering greater oversight of gain-of-function research.

Lasker for mRNA Vaccine Work

The Scientist reports that researchers whose work enabled the development of mRNA-based vaccines are among this year's Lasker Award winners

PLOS Papers on Causal Variant Mapping, Ancient Salmonella, ALK Fusion Test for NSCLC

In PLOS this week: MsCAVIAR approach to map causal variants, analysis of ancient Salmonella, and more.