With more than $10 million from Mars, Inc. (the makers of M&Ms and more), the US Department of Agriculture and IBM Research's computational biology team will be working on sequencing and analyzing the cacao tree. The goal of the project is to find ways to circumvent crop diseases (cocoa farmers lose $700 million annually to fungal diseases) and make yummier chocolate.

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The New York City medical examiner is overseeing an effort to identify missing persons using DNA, according to the Associated Press.

Nobel laureate Günter Blobel has died at 81, the New York Times reports.

In PNAS this week: mouse model of genetically induced emphysema, gene expression signatures of circulating melanoma cells, and more.

Technology Review reports that 2017 was the year of consumer genetic testing and that it could spur new analysis companies.