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NEW YORK ─ Agilent Technologies on Tuesday announced it has obtained clearance from Japan's Ministry of Health, Labour, and Welfare for its GenetiSure Dx Postnatal Assay, bringing comparative genomic hybridization to diagnostic settings in that country.

Santa Clara, California-based Agilent said it anticipates launching the assay in Japan in the first half of 2021.

The test enables clinical geneticists to detect genetic aberrations associated with developmental delay, intellectual disabilities, congenital anomalies, and unexplained dysmorphic features, the firm said.

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Moderna reports its vaccine is effective against new SARS-CoV-2 strains, though it is also developing a booster, according to the New York Times.

A new analysis suggests the B.1.1.7 strain of SARS-CoV-2 could be deadlier than previous ones, according to the Guardian.

NPR reports Merck is halting the development of its two candidate SARS-CoV-2 vaccines following disappointing Phase 1 results.

In PLOS this week: gene mutation linked to inherited venous thrombosis, lncRNA patterns in the Asian tiger mosquito, and more.