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People in the News: Feb 26, 2009

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Merck said that its directors have nominated Thomas Cech to join the company's board.

Cech, who will stand for election by Merck shareholders in April, is currently president of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. He is slated to step down from the position in March, when he will return to a faculty position at the University of Colorado, Boulder.

Cech is a co-founder of Ribozyme Pharmaceuticals, which later became Sirna Therapeutics. Merck acquired Sirna in 2006.


Flamel Technologies, a developer of drug-delivery technologies, has appointed Jeffery Vick as its CBO.

Vick previously served as CEO of Silence Therapeutics.

The Scan

More Boosters for US

Following US Food and Drug Administration authorization, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has endorsed booster doses of the Moderna and Johnson & Johnson SARS-CoV-2 vaccines, the Washington Post writes.

From a Pig

A genetically modified pig kidney was transplanted into a human without triggering an immune response, Reuters reports.

For Privacy's Sake

Wired reports that more US states are passing genetic privacy laws.

Science Paper on How Poaching Drove Evolution in African Elephants

In Science this week: poaching has led to the rapid evolution of tuskless African elephants.