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In a paper published online in advance in PNAS this week, a team led by investigators at the US Department of Agriculture shows that "overexpression of the maize Corngrass1 microRNA prevents flowering, improves digestibility, and increases starch content of switchgrass." The researchers show that several greenhouse and field grown plants into which the Cg1 gene was transferred showed up to 250 percent more starch and "a complete inhibition of flowering."

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In a letter, about two dozen researchers criticize the World Health Organization investigation into the origins of SARS-CoV-2 and call for a new inquiry, the Wall Street Journal reports.

National Geographic reports that nine great apes at the San Diego Zoo have been vaccinated against SARS-CoV-2.

Janet Woodcock, the acting commissioner of the US Food and Drug Administration, speaks with NPR about SARS-CoV-2 testing and vaccines in the US.

In Science this week: genetic study of kidney fibrosis implicates the SOX9-NAV3-YAP1 axis.