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Lying Plea

A researcher who was accused of trying to smuggle cancer research materials out of the US has pleaded guilty to lying to a customs official, the Associated Press reports.

Zaosong Zheng was arrested about a year ago at Logan International Airport in Boston. At the time, the Boston Globe reported that Zheng, who was in the US on a visa sponsored by Harvard University and who had been conducting research at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, allegedly wrapped vials of research materials in cellophane and hid them in a sock in his luggage. It added that Zheng's apparent goal was to bring the samples back to China for further research to be published under his own name.

According to the AP, Zheng has pleaded guilty to making false statements and his sentencing hearing is next month. David Duncan, Zheng's attorney, notes that though Zheng was initially charged with smuggling, he has only pleaded guilty to lying. Duncan further says it is unlikely that Zheng will serve any time, and the AP notes Zheng is to be deported.

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.