In the summer of 2011, the Escherichia coli outbreak in Germany served as a test bed for benchtop sequencing platforms as teams using Life Technologies' Ion Torrent PGM, the Illumina MiSeq, and Roche's 454 GS Junior rushed to be the first to sequence and assemble the strain's whole genome, analyze the data, and detail the evolutionary history of the pathogen, including how it acquired the elements that made it particularly toxic.

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Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) has released the results of a genetic ancestry analysis, the Boston Globe reports.

Retraction Watch's Ivan Oransky and Adam Marcus report that Harvard Medical School and Brigham and Women's Hospital have recommended that more than 30 papers from a former researcher be retracted.

Thomas Steitz, who won the 2009 chemistry Nobel Prize for his ribosome work, has died, the Washington Post reports.

In PLOS this week: mechanisms for genes implicated in coronary artery disease, rumen microbes and host genetics influence cow methane production, and more.