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In Nature this week, a Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory-led team publishes an improved maize reference genome, which was assembled and annotated using single-molecule real-time sequencing and high-resolution optical mapping. Relative to the previous reference genome, the new assembly features a 52-fold increase in contig length, as well as significant improvements in the assembly of intergenic spaces and centromeres.

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In PLOS this week: preconception carrier screening program results, comparative genomics-based analysis of Elizabethkingia meningoseptica, and more.

Canadian regulators are beginning to share information from new drug studies, Undark reports.

In a column at the Dallas Morning News, the Stanley Medical Research Institute's E. Fuller Torrey says the Human Genome Project hasn't delivered on promised results.

Researchers explore a possible genetic cause for some cases of sudden infant death syndrome, KOMO News reports.