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This Week in Science: Jun 7, 2014

In Science this week, an international team of researchers describe the sequencing of the sheep genome, adding the last missing piece of a reference genome collection for major livestock species. With the genomic data, they constructed a phylogenetic tree that compared the reference genome sequences among ruminants and other related species, tracing the lineage back millions of years ago. They also identified unique sheep genes, including ones that support the secretion of lanolin. GenomeWeb Daily News has more on this study here.

In Science Translational Medicine, University of Chicago researcher Elizabeth McNally discusses the impact the discovery of genetic variants underlying cardiovascular disease has had on clinical practice, offering clearer diagnoses than less-stable biomarkers for other diseases and paving the way for genetic therapies for these conditions. Meanwhile, the University of Texas Southwestern's Eric Olson highlighted how a class of microRNAs are becoming promising biomarkers and therapeutic targets in cardiovascular disease. And Daniel Rader of the University of Pennsylvania provides insights into how human genetics can aid in the discovery of new drug targets for coronary artery disease.