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More Nominees for Science Roles

US President Joe Biden has announced additional nominees to fill science leadership roles in his administration, Science reports.

Among the dozen new nominees are Asmeret Berhe, Rick Spinrad, and Monica Medina. Berhe, a professor of soil biogeochemistry at the University of California, Merced, has been nominated to be the director of the Office of Science at the US Department of Energy. As Science notes, that $7 billion research office is the main funder of physical sciences in the US. UC Berkeley's John Harte, who was Berhe's doctoral advisor, tells it that her selection is "totally understandable and makes perfect sense" and that she would bring a "fresh vision" to the office.

Meanwhile, Spinrad, an oceanography professor at Oregon State University, has been tapped to lead the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and Monica Medina, an adjunct professor Georgetown University's School of Foreign Service and CEO of Our Daily Planet, has been selected to oversee science and climate at the State Department.

The Scan

Should've Been Spotted Sooner

Scientists tell the Guardian that SARS-CoV-2 testing issues at a UK lab should have been noticed earlier.

For Martian Fuel

Researchers have outlined a plan to produce rocket fuel on Mars that uses a combination of sunlight, carbon dioxide, frozen water, cyanobacteria, and engineered E. coli, according to Gizmodo.

To Boost Rapid Testing

The Washington Post writes that new US programs aim to boost the availability of rapid at-home SARS-CoV-2 tests.

PNAS Papers on Strawberry Evolution, Cell Cycle Regulators, False-Positive Triplex Gene Editing

In PNAS this week: strawberry pan-genome, cell cycle-related roles for MDM2 and MDMX, and more.