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Columbus' Origins Probed

Researchers are launching a project to analyze bone samples from the remains of Christopher Columbus to determine where in Europe he was from, the Associated Press reports.

According to the AP, it's widely believed that Columbus, who sailed the Atlantic on behalf of Spain, was from Genoa in Italy, though others have speculated that he may have been from elsewhere. Granada University's José Antonio Lorente, who is leading the effort, tells it that the investigation could clear up inconsistencies in the historical record.

The AP adds that researchers confirmed in 2003 that the remains in a Sevilla tomb belonged to Columbus, but that further analyses into his ancestry were not yet feasible. Lorente and his colleagues are sending four small bone samples from Columbus and additional samples from his son and his brother to labs in Italy, Mexico, and the US for analysis, and they estimate they will have the results pointing to Columbus' origins in about five months, the AP notes.

The Scan

Billions for Antivirals

The US is putting $3.2 billion toward a program to develop antivirals to treat COVID-19 in its early stages, the Wall Street Journal reports.

NFT of the Web

Tim Berners-Lee, who developed the World Wide Web, is auctioning its original source code as a non-fungible token, Reuters reports.

23andMe on the Nasdaq

23andMe's shares rose more than 20 percent following its merger with a special purpose acquisition company, as GenomeWeb has reported.

Science Papers Present GWAS of Brain Structure, System for Controlled Gene Transfer

In Science this week: genome-wide association study ties variants to white matter stricture in the brain, and more.