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New Products: PacBio's SMRT Analysis 1.4

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Pacific Biosciences has launched SMRT Analysis 1.4, a software upgrade that provides higher quality genome assemblies. It will be available for download on Jan. 31. The upgrade includes a new hierarchical de novo assembly process, HGap, which allows users to assemble microbial and fungal genomes using only PacBio long reads, and also incorporates a multi-read consensus algorithm dubbed Quiver.

The Scan

And For Adolescents

The US Food and Drug Administration has authorized the Pfizer-BioNTech SARS-CoV-2 vaccine for children between the ages of 12 and 15 years old.

Also of Concern to WHO

The Wall Street Journal reports that the World Health Organization has classified the SARS-CoV-2 variant B.1.617 as a "variant of concern."

Test for Them All

The New York Times reports on the development of combined tests for SARS-CoV-2 and other viruses like influenza.

PNAS Papers on Oral Microbiome Evolution, Snake Toxins, Transcription Factor Binding

In PNAS this week: evolution of oral microbiomes among hominids, comparative genomic analysis of snake toxins, and more.