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In PNAS this week, researchers at Stanford and Tufts investigate various DNA sequences that can interfere with transcription and genomic stability because of their unusual structural properties. Sequences containing stretches of G-rich homopurine homopyrimidine are implicated in regulation of immunogenesis, genomic translocations, and telomere function, the researchers write.

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The Financial Times reports the US bolstering its ability to track SARS-CoV-2 alterations.

The New York Times reports that Cedars-Sinai researchers have uncovered a new strain of SARS-CoV-2 in Southern California.

In Nucleic Acids Research this week: pan-cancer atlas focus on miRNA biogenesis mutations, methylation analysis of pig skeletal muscles, and more.

President-elect Joe Biden has nominated Eric Lander to serve as director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy, the Associated Press says.