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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

Alzheimer's Risk Gene Among Women

CNN reports that researchers have found that variants in MGMT contribute to Alzheimer's disease risk among women but not men.

Still Hanging Around

The Guardian writes that persistent pockets of SARS-CoV-2 in the body could contribute to long COVID.

Through a Little Spit

Enteric viruses like norovirus may also be transmitted through saliva, not just the fecal-oral route, according to New Scientist.

Nature Papers Present Method to Detect Full Transcriptome, Viruses Infecting Asgard Archaea, More

In Nature this week: VASA-seq approach to detect full transcriptome, analysis of viruses infecting Asgard archaea, and more.