23andMe has gotten the go-ahead from the US Food and Drug Administration to sell its genetic health risk report on three BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutations that increase a person's chances of developing breast cancer, as GenomeWeb reports. These variants are most common among people of Ashkenazi Jewish descent, though they are found to a lesser degree among individuals of other ethnic backgrounds.

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The UK's Nuffield Council on Bioethics says genetically modifying human embryos could be morally permissible, according to the Guardian.

A new Nature Biotechnology paper reports that CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing can lead to large deletions or complex rearrangements that could be pathogenic.

The Wall Street Journal likens a prototype developed by Synthetic Genomics to a "biological fax machine."

In PNAS this week: strategy for reactivating Rett syndrome-linked MECP2, small molecules able to suppress Staphylococcus aureus virulence, and more.