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NEW YORK – The 39th Annual JP Morgan Healthcare Conference is being held virtually this week due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. The first day was very busy for firms operating in the diagnostics and genomic tools markets, and our coverage of those presentations can be found here.

Below are brief reports on individual presentations webcast by the companies or through the JP Morgan conference portal on Day 2.

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

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.

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.