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The Scan

That Gene There

Genetic diversity in one gene appears to help the bacterium that causes syphilis evade the immune system.

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has launched a SARS-CoV-2 genome sequencing consortium, the New York Times reports.

ScienceInsider writes that the National Institute of Health's termination of a grant studying how coronaviruses jump from bats to humans has raised concerns.

In Science this week: a microRNA regulates extracellular vesicle secretion from prostate cancer cells, and more.

A firm is examining sewage for SARS-CoV-2 as a means of monitoring the pandemic, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Watch It Go

The Wall Street Journal has put together maps of how SARS-CoV-2 has spread based on genetic mutations that have accrued in the virus.

Other Effects

BuzzFeed News reports that studies of rare genetic diseases have been affected by pandemic-related closures.

In Nature this week: combining genome-wide association and transcriptome study data homes in on cells involved in brain disorders, and more.

The Boston Globe reports Harvard University is paying $1.4 million to settle a claim that a former professor there overcharged work to US federal grants.

Found in the Air

A new study found SARS-CoV-2 genetic material within air samples from confined spaces and crowded areas, the New York Times reports.

From the Freezer

A Glasgow University-led team says the livestock-infecting bluetongue virus may have re-emerged through contaminated frozen stocks.

In Genome Biology this week: computational approach to determine phylogenetic relationships from single-cell data, metagenomic classification pipeline, and more.

New Scientist reports the names of the members of the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies that is advising the UK on its coronavirus response are to be released.

Funding Gone

According to Politico, a project studying how coronaviruses spread from bats to people has lost its federal US funding.

Lifespan Effects

Science reports that very rare genetic mutations in combination may take years off people's lives.

In PNAS this week: single-cell RNA sequencing study of pancreatic duct cells, sequencing of viruses affecting honey bees, and more.

Questions swirl regarding whether Alex Azar, the secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services, may soon be out of a job, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Politico reports the US Food and Drug Administration is dealing with a number of inaccurate tests for SARS-CoV-2 antibodies.

In a twin study, researchers find genetic factors account for half of the differences observed in COVID-19 symptoms, according to the Guardian.

In PLOS this week: genomic analysis of multidrug-resistant Mycobacterium tuberculosis strains from Colombia, inflammatory response signatures in cancer, and more.

Donald Kennedy Dies

Donald Kennedy, the former commissioner of the US Food and Drug Administration and the former editor-in-chief of Science, has died of COVID-19 at 88 years of age.

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced that an antibody survey of state residents found that SARS-CoV-2 infections may be more widespread than thought, the New York Times reports.

At the Economist and his own site, Bill Gates discusses the scientific advances needed to address the pandemic and what comes next.

In Science this week: expression of concern issued for paper on using circulating tumor DNA methylation profiles to diagnose colorectal cancer, and more.

Forced Out

Former BARDA chief Rick Bright tells the New York Times he was forced out because he pushed for strict testing of a coronavirus treatment touted by President Donald Trump.


Nature News reports that genomics is being applied to trace and try to prevent additional COVID-19 waves.

Rady's Children Hospital and San Diego County are teaming up to test pediatric patients and their families for COVID-19 to gauge the spread of the virus locally, according to the San Diego Union-Tribune.

Wildlife managers aim to boost the genetic diversity of Mexican gray wolves by placing captive-born foster pups into packs with similarly aged wild pups, the Mercury News reports.

In Science this week: Genetic Probability tool identifies likely diagnoses in 45 percent of inflammatory arthritis cases, and more.