PCR in Space

How do cosmic rays affect DNA? Does DNA behave differently in microgravity? Can PCR be used to find new life forms?

These are examples of questions that the Genes in Space program from Boeing, Amplyus' miniPCR, and MfA may be tackling. The organization is holding a contest for students and educators to submit their ideas for PCR-based experiments to be tested on the International Space Station.

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Though many details have yet to be worked out, the draft deal for the UK's withdrawal from the EU is giving researchers some hints for what they can expect, Nature News says.

DNA testing has solved a 100-year-old mystery contained in the skull and teeth samples of a now-extinct monkey that once inhabited Jamaica, Gizmodo reports.

As the UN ponders a ban on gene drives, one malaria researcher says there are less dramatic ways to fight the disease in Africa than unleashing GM mosquitoes on a whole continent.

In Nature this week: an improved reference genome of the Aedes aegypti mosquito, genomes of four species of truffles, and more.