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This Week in Science: Mar 23, 2007

Scientists at the Danish company Danisco, in collaboration with Université Laval in Québec, found a defense mechanism that bacteria use to fend off phages. Bacteria put their CRISPR and related spacer sequences to work in a way that resembles how RNAi operates in higher organisms.

Also of note,
University of
California ,
Santa Barbara, neuroscientists have engineered mice whose retinas can distinguish three pigments instead of two. They knocked in a gene for the human long-wavelength opsin protein to create an X-linked polymorphism, which allowed the mice to see in color.

In news, senators supportive of biomedical research reacted to the federal budget proposal to cut funding for the NIH in 2008. At a Senate hearing this week, scientists bemoaned the flat funding for the past five years, which has seen a sharp decrease in awarded grants and has led to researchers choosing to leave the field.


The Scan

Billions for Antivirals

The US is putting $3.2 billion toward a program to develop antivirals to treat COVID-19 in its early stages, the Wall Street Journal reports.

NFT of the Web

Tim Berners-Lee, who developed the World Wide Web, is auctioning its original source code as a non-fungible token, Reuters reports.

23andMe on the Nasdaq

23andMe's shares rose more than 20 percent following its merger with a special purpose acquisition company, as GenomeWeb has reported.

Science Papers Present GWAS of Brain Structure, System for Controlled Gene Transfer

In Science this week: genome-wide association study ties variants to white matter stricture in the brain, and more.