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Norman Sharpless

The US Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar has appointed Norman Sharpless as acting commissioner of the US Food and Drug Administration. Sharpless, currently the director of the National Cancer Institute, will take over for current FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb who announced on March 5 that he will resign from the post in one month. Before his position at the NCI, Sharpless directed the University of North Carolina's Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center, authored more than 100 research papers, and treated leukemia patients.

The Scan

Researchers Compare WGS, Exome Sequencing-Based Mendelian Disease Diagnosis

Investigators find a diagnostic edge for whole-genome sequencing, while highlighting the cost advantages and improving diagnostic rate of exome sequencing in EJHG.

Researchers Retrace Key Mutations in Reassorted H1N1 Swine Flu Virus With Avian-Like Features

Mutations in the acidic polymerase-coding gene boost the pathogenicity and transmissibility of Eurasian avian-like H1N1 swine influenza viruses, a PNAS paper finds.

Genome Sequences Reveal Evolutionary History of South America's Canids

An analysis in PNAS of South American canid species' genomes offers a look at their evolutionary history, as well as their relationships and adaptations.

Lung Cancer Response to Checkpoint Inhibitors Reflected in Circulating Tumor DNA

In non-small cell lung cancer patients, researchers find in JCO Precision Oncology that survival benefits after immune checkpoint blockade coincide with a dip in ctDNA levels.