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President Obama Signs 21st Century Cures Act Into Law

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – President Barack Obama signed into law yesterday the 21st Century Cures Act, a sweeping biomedical research funding bill that had garnered strong support from Republicans and Democrats alike.

Key provisions of the act include an additional $4.8 billion over 10 years for the National Institutes of Health to fund key programs, with $1.4 billion earmarked for the President's Precision Medicine Initiative, $1.8 billion for Vice President Joe Biden's Cancer Moonshot, and $1.6 billion for the BRAIN initiative. The bill would also provide $500 million to the US Food and Drug Administration, and streamline the way the agency approves drugs and medical devices.

The legislation was first approved by the US House of Representatives in mid-2015, and later most its key provisions were cleared by the Senate's Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) committee.

However, wrangling over how the bill would be funded delayed its final passage until this month, when the House again voted in favor of the legislation by a vote of 344 to 77. The Senate passed the bill a week later by a vote of 94 to 5, with the President at the time expressing his intention to sign it into law as soon as it crossed his desk.

The Scan

Could Mix It Up

The US Food and Drug Administration is considering a plan that would allow for the mixing-and-matching of SARS-CoV-2 vaccines and boosters, the New York Times says.

Closest to the Dog

New Scientist reports that extinct Japanese wolf appears to be the closest known wild relative of dogs.

Offer to Come Back

The Knoxville News Sentinel reports that the University of Tennessee is offering Anming Hu, a professor who was acquitted of charges that he hid ties to China, his position back.

PNAS Papers on Myeloid Differentiation MicroRNAs, Urinary Exosomes, Maize Domestication

In PNAS this week: role of microRNAs in myeloid differentiation, exosomes in urine, and more.