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Money and the Prize

Russian billionaire Alisher Usmanov, who bought James Watson's Nobel Prize at auction last week for more than $4 million, says he wants Watson to keep it, NPR reports.

Usmanov is thought to be worth some $15 billion — he holds assets in steel and mining and is a major stakeholder in the Arsenal football club, the Guardian adds.

In a statement, Usmanov says that "a situation in which an outstanding scientist has to sell a medal recognizing his achievements is unacceptable." He notes that Watson's work has contributed to cancer research, a disease that has affected his family.

"It is important for me that the money that I spent on this medal will go to supporting scientific research, and the medal will stay with the person who deserved it," he adds.

Watson, who won the Nobel Prize in 1962 with Francis Crick and Maurice Wilkins for determining the structure of DNA, had said he was selling the prize out of both financial necessity and to raise money for charity and research.

The Scan

Response Too Slow, Cautious

A new report criticizes the global response to the threat of the COVID-19 pandemic, Nature News reports.

Pushed a Bit Later

Novavax has pushed back its timeline for filing for authorization for its SARS-CoV-2 vaccine, according to Bloomberg.

AMA Announces Anti-Racism Effort

The Associated Press reports that the American Medical Association has released a plan to address systemic racism in healthcare.

Nucleic Acids Research Papers on miRMaster 2.0, MutationTaster2021, LipidSuite

In Nucleic Acids Research this week: tool to examine small non-coding RNAs, approach to predict ramifications of DNA variants, and more.