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Bay Area molecular diagnostics shop Wave 80 Biosciences is gearing up to evaluate its first product — a semi-quantitative HIV viral load assay that runs on the company's cartridge-based, near-patient, sample-to-answer testing system — in full-scale clinical trials by the end of t

The platform will combine immiscible phase filtration sample prep with automated amplification and detection, and is expected to have initial applications in point-of-care HIV testing in remote and resource-poor areas of the world. The company also sees the platform being used for decentralized molecular testing in more developed countries.

At last week's Sample Prep 2010 meeting in Baltimore, Md., microfluidics, integration, and automation were oft-cited as future market drivers in the area of sample prep for virus, toxin, and pathogen detection.

The US has sent its formal notice of withdrawal from the World Health Organization, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Science reports that a draft spending bill would increase the US National Institutes of Health budget by 13 percent.

The Harvard Crimson reports that Harvard and MIT are suing the Department of Homeland Security and ICE over the new international student visa policy.

In Nucleic Acids Research this week: algorithm to determine molecular sequence types and other microbial features, computational method to uncover R-loop structures, and more.