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This Week in Nature: Apr 5, 2007

In an editorial, Nature discusses the dearth of South African scientists under 50 years old as well as black scientists. There is, though, good mentoring going on in South Africa that Nature wants to draw attention to by giving out awards. They are accepting nominations until the end of May.

In the news section, an item discusses a new technology for neuroscientists that may make electrodes outdated. Instead, genetically engineered proteins react to different colors of light to either stimulate or inhibit neurons.

Research highlights include a study done by scientists at the Department of Systems Biology at Harvard Medical School who have found that it might be possible to bias selection against bacterial resistance to antibiotics. Competition assays found that at certain sub-lethal doses, wild type E. coli survived over other antibiotic-resistant strains.

A landmark study of hagfish embryology out of the RIKEN Centre for Developmental Biology in Kobe, Japan, has revealed the origins and early development of the most primitive living vertebrate, the hagfish. Molecular cloning studies revealed regulatory genes tied to neural crest development, a key evolutionary marker of vertebrates.

The Scan

Gone, But Now Reconstructed SARS-CoV-2 Genomes

In a preprint, a researcher describes his recovery of viral sequences that had been removed from a common database.

Rare Heart Inflammation Warning

The Food and Drug Administration is adding a warning about links between a rare inflammatory heart condition and two SARS-CoV-2 vaccines, Reuters reports.

Sandwich Sampling

The New York Times sent tuna sandwiches for PCR analysis.

Nature Papers Describe Gut Viruses, New Format for Storing Quantitative Genomic Data, More

In Nature this week: catalog of DNA viruses of the human gut microbiome, new dense depth data dump format to store quantitative genomic data, and more.