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Sony of Tokyo has received US Patent No. 8,491,853, "Substrate and device for bioassay and method for making the substrate." The patent describes a substrate hosting a group of reaction regions that serve as a field where the interaction between substances proceeds and is formed in the substrate. The substrate also hosts a group of information pits that are used to obtain positional information of individual reaction regions and substance information used in the reaction regions.

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The Hill reports President Donald Trump issued an executive directing federal agencies to cut the number of board and advisory committees they have.

The New York Times reports that researchers are combining tools to more quickly develop crops to feed a growing population and cope with shifting climates.

Scientists in Canada are looking to the UK's plan to sequence children with rare conditions for inspiration, the National Post reports.

In PNAS this week: copy number changes arose during polar bear evolution, genomic and transcriptomic analysis of the Siberian hamster, and more.