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Today in Science

How are universities ranked? Well, it depends on who is doing the ranking. Leiden University, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, the Times Higher Education Supplement, and U.S. News & World Report all have different ways to come up with their rankings — and none of their methods keep all of the critics happy.

In the United States, the new COMPETES Act requires researchers to include mentoring plans as part of grant applications to the National Science Foundation, says this news story. The National Institutes of Health also issued a statement saying that researchers should use some of their time to mentor students and postdocs.

Since the discovery of cancer stem cells 15 years ago by John Dick, these cells have been found in just about every kind of cancer. This story discusses ongoing research into what makes these cells dangerous — from their ability to overcome radiation damage to promoting angiogenesis.

Epidemiologist John Ioannidis sees a problem with many studies that show sex-based genetic differences. Ioannidis and his colleagues searched for papers that declared a gender-based effect on genes and re-analyzed their methods and statistics. Of the 77 papers they looked at, 19 had at least one apparently incorrect finding. Researchers, says Ioannidis in this news article, need to better communicate the limitations of their findings.

 

The Scan

NFTs for Genome Sharing

Nature News writes that non-fungible tokens could be a way for people to profit from sharing genomic data.

Wastewater Warning System

Time magazine writes that cities and college campuses are monitoring sewage for SARS-CoV-2, an approach officials hope lasts beyond COVID-19.

Networks to Boost Surveillance

Scientific American writes that new organizations and networks aim to improve the ability of developing countries to conduct SARS-CoV-2 genomic surveillance.

Genome Biology Papers on Gastric Cancer Epimutations, BUTTERFLY, GUNC Tool

In Genome Biology this week: recurrent epigenetic mutations in gastric cancer, correction tool for unique molecular identifier-based assays, and more.