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SpeeDx PlexPrime SARS-CoV-2 Genotyping

SpeeDx has launched a SARS-CoV-2 variant analysis assay for research use only. The PlexPrime SARS-CoV-2 Alpha/Beta/Gamma+ assay is a single-well multiplex test designed to detect mutations N501Y, S982A, and E484K in the spike gene of SARS-CoV-2. These mutations are found in the alpha (B.1.1.7), beta (B.1.351), and gamma (P.1) variants of concern. The test is compatible with standard qPCR instrumentation. It can potentially reduce the manual process of preparing positive samples for sequence analysis by identifying samples of interest, ultimately reducing turnaround and hands-on time, the company said. The firm also plans to launch a multiplex assay for mutations related to the delta variant, and is currently assessing other mutations.

The Scan

Just Breathing

A new analysis suggests that most Mycobacterium tuberculosis is spread by aerosols from breathing, rather than by coughing, the New York Times reports.

Just Like This One

NPR reports that the World Health Organization has hired a South African biotech company to recreate mRNA vaccine for SARS-CoV-2 that is similar to the one developed by Moderna.

Slow Start

The Wall Street Journal reports that Biogen's Alzheimer's disease treatment had revenues for July through September that totaled $300,000.

Genome Research Papers on Cancer Chromatin, Splicing in the Thymus, Circular RNAs in Cancer

In Genome Research this week: analysis of bivalent chromatin sites, RBFOX splicing factors' role in thymic epithelial cells, and more.