It's the time of year for lists and navel-gazing. Science named the first quantum machine as the breakthrough of the year. The runners-up, though, included synthetic genomes, the sequencing of the Neandertal genome, next-gen genomics, and exome sequencing, showing that the 'omics fields have a bit to offer.

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 Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), who chairs the Senate health committee, will be retiring at the end of his term, Stat News reports.

UCSF researchers find that having two X chromosomes may contribute to women's longer lifespans, according to Discover's D-brief blog.

The Wall Street Journal reports on the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's use of genetic approaches to study foodborne illnesses.

In PNAS this week: immune cell profiling of wild baboons by social status, metabolomics profiling of esophageal tumors, and more.