Recombination has a more pronounced effect on common variation in the human genome than on rare forms of variation, according to a study by researchers in the US and Switzerland. In its effort to assess spontaneous mutations in relation to genomic context, a University of Michigan-lead team focused on very rare variants found in population sequence data representing 202 genes from more than 14,000 individuals.

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Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) has released the results of a genetic ancestry analysis, the Boston Globe reports.

Retraction Watch's Ivan Oransky and Adam Marcus report that Harvard Medical School and Brigham and Women's Hospital have recommended that more than 30 papers from a former researcher be retracted.

Thomas Steitz, who won the 2009 chemistry Nobel Prize for his ribosome work, has died, the Washington Post reports.

In PLOS this week: mechanisms for genes implicated in coronary artery disease, rumen microbes and host genetics influence cow methane production, and more.