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Taking into account recent developments in biomedical technology over the last 20 years or so, a new document backed by Pope Benedict XVI called "Dignitas Personae (The Dignity of a Person), an Instruction of Certain Bioethical Questions," reasserts the Vatican's opposition to embryonic stem cell research, in vitro fertilization, and human cloning. The morning after pill and other similar drugs were called "gravely immoral," says a BBC story.

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According to BBC News, the global vaccine-sharing initiative has sent its first shipment, which arrived in Ghana this week.

CNN reports that a US Food and Drug Administration document says Johnson & Johnson's SARS-CoV-2 vaccine meets the requirements to receive an Emergency Use Authorization.

Researchers in France are developing a new, fast test for SARS-CoV-2 that initial testing indicates may be highly accurate, the Guardian says.

In Cell this week: analysis of fitness patterns among SARS-CoV-2 isolates, single-cell transcriptome analysis of immune features in COVID-19, and more.