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For Serial Testing

The US Food and Drug Administration has authorized antigen tests for SARS-CoV-2 to be used for serial testing of asymptomatic people, as GenomeWeb reports.

The tests include Quidel's QuickVue At-Home OTC COVID-19 Test, Abbott's BinaxNOW, and Becton Dickinson's BD Veritor System for Rapid Detection of SARS-CoV-2. FDA notes that these tests had previously received authorization to test symptomatic individuals, but now have been given the OK for use in serial testing of asymptomatic people.

This, NPR adds, could help slow the spread of COVID-19 by identifying asymptomatic individuals who nevertheless can spread the virus.

"Screening testing, especially with the over-the-counter tests authorized today, is an important part of the country's pandemic response — many schools, workplaces, communities, and other entities are setting up testing programs to quickly screen for COVID-19," Jeff Shuren, the director of the FDA's Center for Devices and Radiological Health, says in a statement.

The Scan

Highly Similar

Researchers have uncovered bat viruses that are highly similar to SARS-CoV-2, according to Nature News.

Gain of Oversight

According to the Wall Street Journal, the Biden Administration is considering greater oversight of gain-of-function research.

Lasker for mRNA Vaccine Work

The Scientist reports that researchers whose work enabled the development of mRNA-based vaccines are among this year's Lasker Award winners

PLOS Papers on Causal Variant Mapping, Ancient Salmonella, ALK Fusion Test for NSCLC

In PLOS this week: MsCAVIAR approach to map causal variants, analysis of ancient Salmonella, and more.