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New Products: Oct 18, 2011

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GenBank release 186.0 is available here via FTP from the National Center for Biotechnology Information. It contains data as of Oct. 13, 2011.

The new release comprises approximately 132 gigabases of data from 144 million entries of non-whole genome sequencing, non-CON sequences, and around 219 gigabases from 68 million entries from whole-genome sequences. Uncompressed, the release 185.0 flatfiles require around 518 gigabases.

Since the previous release in August, the non-WGS/non-CON portion grew by 1.4 gigabases, increasing the number of entries by 2.2 million. An additional 789,185 records were updated.


NCBI has also released build 135 of dbSNP, available here. The release is based on the NCBI genome build GRCh37.3 that included assembly changes and also includes new submissions from phase I of the 1000 Genomes Project.


Life Technologies has launched a series of products for its Ion Torrent PGM (see story, this issue). The Ion Xpress Plus Fragment Library Kit reduces library prep from four hour to two hours. The Torrent Suite 1.5 is a suite of new algorithms that increases base output by 100 percent and the number of perfect 100-base-pair reads by more than 200 percent, according to the company. Additionally, the software reduces analysis time to 30 minutes on the 314 chip and to one hour on the 316 chip.

The company also launched the Ion TargetSeq Custom Enrichment kit, an in-solution hybridization kit to enrich targets greater than 100 kilobases; and the Ion Xpress DNA Barcode Adaptor 1-16 kit, a 16 barcode kit, which has the potential to scale up to 384 barcodes.

The Scan

More Boosters for US

Following US Food and Drug Administration authorization, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has endorsed booster doses of the Moderna and Johnson & Johnson SARS-CoV-2 vaccines, the Washington Post writes.

From a Pig

A genetically modified pig kidney was transplanted into a human without triggering an immune response, Reuters reports.

For Privacy's Sake

Wired reports that more US states are passing genetic privacy laws.

Science Paper on How Poaching Drove Evolution in African Elephants

In Science this week: poaching has led to the rapid evolution of tuskless African elephants.