Selections from The Scientist’s reading list:

  • Lokiarchaeota, prokaryotic microbes with eukaryote-like genes described in Nature this May, are throwing evolutionary biologists for a loop. Quanta this week (October 29) examined how researchers are studying “Loki” in an attempt to resolve “how life transformed from simple single-celled organisms to the menagerie of complex life known as eukaryotes—a category that includes everything from yeast to azaleas to elephants.”
  • “It is disappointing that the document does not call for . . . re-assignment of responsibility for select-agent oversight from the CDC [Centers for Disease Control and Prevention] and the USDA [US Department of Agriculture] to an independent federal entity that does not perform and does not fund select agent work,” biosafety expert Richard Ebright of Rutgers University in New Jersey told USA Today regarding a 187-page document issued by White House science and security advisers this week...

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