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This Week in Science: Jan 18, 2008

On April 7th and after, all articles accepted for publication that were funded by the NIH have to be deposited into PubMed Central within 12 months of publication. It is, though, up to the authors to keep track of the individual journals' copyright policy and if the journal itself will submit the papers.

The origin of syphilis may lie in the jungles of South America as a milder, nonsexual disease that then quickly evolved upon contact with European populations. According to this news story, Canadian doctors found the children of the Akwio tribe suffered from an open sore disease that, upon sequencing and evolutionary analysis, appears as if it could be the forerunner to syphilis.

Anthropologist Jonathan Friedlaender found that the people who colonized the remote reaches of Oceania were originally from Taiwan. By looking at 90 genomic markers of 952 people from 41 populations, Friedlaender supports the idea that a population from Taiwan moved quickly through Melanesia, the "express train" theory. "If it wasn’t exactly an express train, it was pretty fast, and very few passengers climbed aboard or got off along the way," Friedlaender told the New York Times.

John Kelsoe, a psychiatric geneticist, opened a company that tests people for bipolar disease, a condition that affects about 1 percent of the population. Psynomics tests for variants of GRK3 that double the risk of having bipolar disorder. Francis Collins has criticized the company, saying that it "is using data from the other side of the bridge, the bad side."


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.