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This Week in Science: Nov 21, 2014

In this week's Science, a team led by the University of Washington's John Stamatoyannopoulos reports on a study comparing regions of mouse and human DNA that control gene expression, finding that about a third of them are conserved between the two species. Working in conjunction with the Mouse ENCODE Consortium, the researchers mapped the mouse regulatory DNA landscape in 45 mouse cell and tissue types using sites called DNAse I hypersensitive sites (DHSs), which typically mark gene regulatory regions. The findings were compared with DHS maps from corresponding human cells and tissues. Notably, some of the shared DHSs were farther from the genes they influenced than were DHSs that weren't shared, suggesting that the DHSs that have been conserved throughout mammalian evolutionary history may be functionally different from DHSs closer to the gene they control. GenomeWeb has more on the Mouse ENCODE papers here.

Also in Science, a Harvard Medical School group reports data showing that epigenetic information can be transmitted through histone modifications independently of DNA sequence, DNA methylation, or RNAi. In fission yeast, they showed that ectopically induced domains for histone H3 lysine 9 methylation — a conserved marker of heterochromatin — are inherited through mitotic and meiotic cell divisions even after the removal of the sequence-specific initiator.

The Scan

Support for Moderna Booster

An FDA advisory committee supports authorizing a booster for Moderna's SARS-CoV-2 vaccine, CNN reports.

Testing at UK Lab Suspended

SARS-CoV-2 testing at a UK lab has been suspended following a number of false negative results.

J&J CSO to Step Down

The Wall Street Journal reports that Paul Stoffels will be stepping down as chief scientific officer at Johnson & Johnson by the end of the year.

Science Papers Present Proteo-Genomic Map of Human Health, Brain Tumor Target, Tool to Infer CNVs

In Science this week: gene-protein-disease map, epigenomic and transcriptomic approach highlights potential therapeutic target for gliomas, and more