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A post on the evolgen blog checks in on a new paper (in press at Nature Genetics) from Duke's Ralph Haygood and colleagues that tracks gene regulation -- in particular, cis regulatory regions -- as the major difference between chimps and humans. That helps to confirm the theory, posited in 1975 by Mary-Claire King and Allan Wilson, that regulatory regions would prove to be the differentiator between two species whose genome sequences are so similar.

 

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Moderna reports its vaccine is effective against new SARS-CoV-2 strains, though it is also developing a booster, according to the New York Times.

A new analysis suggests the B.1.1.7 strain of SARS-CoV-2 could be deadlier than previous ones, according to the Guardian.

NPR reports Merck is halting the development of its two candidate SARS-CoV-2 vaccines following disappointing Phase 1 results.

In PLOS this week: gene mutation linked to inherited venous thrombosis, lncRNA patterns in the Asian tiger mosquito, and more.