By a GenomeWeb staff reporter

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – The US Senate this year will again consider legislation that would reform the country's patent system, as a bi-partisan bill based on one that stalled in 2010 has been introduced early in the 112th Congress.

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In Nature this week: omic analysis of permafrost microbes, hookworm genome, and more.

Biologists turn to environmental DNA sampling to determine whether elusive or invasive species are shedding DNA in a given area.

Rob Knight writes at Scientific American that microbiome studies are about to break out of the laboratory.

Harold Varmus, the director of the National Cancer Institute, has announced that he is stepping down after nearly five years.