NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Researchers at Washington University School of Medicine have received a nearly $2 million grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to identify biomarkers and develop a molecular diagnostic test for onchocerciasis, commonly called river blindness.

The disease, which is caused by the parasitic worm Onchocerca volvulus and causes visual impairment, skin lesions, and severe itching, affects around 37 million people, mostly in sub-Saharan Africa but also in Latin America.

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Researchers test gene therapy targeting a different cancer protein in a new trial, the New York Times reports.

Pennsylvania State University researchers found that salivary microRNAs could predict which kids would have longer concussion symptoms, according to NPR.

The Associated Press reports Alex Azar, the new Department of Health and Human Services secretary nominee, made millions of dollars as a pharmaceutical executive.

In PNAS this week: immune profiling of breast cancer, transposable element patterns in rice, and more.