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In PLoS One this week, a study looks at retrogene evolution in mammals. In scrutinizing patterns of retrogene distribution in eight mammalian genomes and four non-mammalian genomes, researchers found that there has been a burst of young retrogenes in mammals and that in these shared retrofamilies, 14 to 18 percent of functional retrogenes may have originated independently in multiple mammalian species.

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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.