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This Week in Science: Jul 20, 2018

In this week's Science, a pair of research policy experts weigh in on research regulation and reporting requirement reform, arguing that recent federal government action — such as the 21st Century Cures Act — fails to adequately engage stakeholders in the research community. "The current approach of agencies working 'behind a curtain' and previewing [a policy] to the research community only at late stages is not productive," they say, and an "active voice" from research community representatives is missing. "Although the administration's intent to reduce regulations and associated costs has been well publicized, the regulation of research has not been a focus and considerable gains are yet to be made," they conclude.

And in Science Signaling, a team led by Oregon Health & Science University researchers reports finding that two types of difficult-to-treat leukemia are susceptible to a drug approved for a different form of the disease. The scientists focused on juvenile myelomonocytic leukemia (JMML) and acute myeloid leukemia (AML), which are associated with mutations in a gene that encodes the protein PTPN11. They found that in leukemia cells, PTPN11 is activated by an enzyme called TNK2. They administered the cancer drug dasatinib, which antagonizes TNK2, to a patient with recurrent PTPN11-mutant JMML, which helped extend the patient's survival. Although dasatinib did not completely block PTPN11 activity, the researchers suggest that it could be used to slow AML and JMML progression.