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Fast, cheap, accurate: Researchers pin hopes on Nobel Prize-winning CRISPR-technology tests to detect coronavirus

Dr. Doudna, Nobel winner, develops Covid test

Coronavirus tests performed in labs are the gold standard for accuracy and antigen tests are a fast and inexpensive alternative.

But backers of a third type of test, developed by a Nobel Prize winner using cutting-edge CRISPR technology, say it has the potential to be all three: rapid, accurate and inexpensive.

Although these gene-editing technology tests are still being developed and won't be ready in the United States this year as the weather cools and demand surges, research groups recently published scientific papers describing them as an appealing alternative as testing shortages persist in the COVID-19 pandemic.

Dr. Jennifer Doudna, a University of California, Berkeley researcher whose pioneering work in CRISPR earned a share of this year's Nobel Prize in chemistry, said the test can be done quickly and doesn't require a lab.

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Appeals court upholds Kentucky abortion law requiring clinics to have transfer agreements with hospitals

EMW Women's Surical CenterA federal appeals court on Friday upheld a Kentucky law that requires abortion clinics to have written agreements with a hospital and ambulance service in case of medical emergencies.

The 2-1 ruling from the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals reverses a 2018 district court ruling that found the law, first passed in 1998, violated constitutionally protected due process rights.

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NY shuts down 10,000 person wedding as Cuomo reveals new COVID-19 plan

Cuomo suts down 10,000 guest wedding

"For fall we are going to deploy a micro-cluster strategy. We have been targeting all our actions either ... statewide ... or we reopened on a regional level. We are now going to analyze it block-by-block," he said. "We have data so specific that we can't show it because it could violate privacy conditions. We know exactly where the new cases are coming from."

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Appeals court blocks further construction on Trump border wall

Appeals court blocks further building of Trump wall

The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals on Friday ruled that President Trump’s use of emergency powers to allocate millions of dollars in funding for the construction of a southern border wall was illegal, the latest blow to the Trump administration’s effort to limit immigration.

In the 2-1 decision, the court upheld a December 2019 district court summary judgment in favor of a request from the advocacy groups the Sierra Club and the Southern Border Communities Coalition against Defense Secretary Mark Esper, acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf and “all persons acting under their direction ... from using military construction funds appropriated for other purposes to build a border wall.”

The previous judgment was also made in response to a separate filing from nine U.S. states, including California, Colorado and New York, to stop the construction of the border wall.

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Emails Detail Effort to Silence C.D.C. and Question Its Science

Michael Caputo emailsOn June 30, as the coronavirus was cresting toward its summer peak, Dr. Paul Alexander, a new science adviser at the Department of Health and Human Services, composed a scathing two-page critique of an interview given by a revered scientist at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Dr. Anne Schuchat, a 32-year veteran of the C.D.C. and its principal deputy director, had appealed to Americans to wear masks and warned, “We have way too much virus across the country.” But Dr. Alexander, a part-time assistant professor of health research methods, appeared sure he understood the coronavirus better.

“Her aim is to embarrass the president,” he wrote, commenting on Dr. Schuchat’s appeal for face masks in an interview with the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Thousands of small-business loans may have been fraudulent, House panel finds

Thouands of small business lonas were fraudulentTens of thousands of loans worth billions of dollars may have been subject to fraud, waste and abuse in the $659 billion taxpayer-funded Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) aimed at helping small U.S. businesses survive the coronavirus pandemic, a congressional panel said on Tuesday.

Over $1 billion went to companies that received multiple loans, in violation of the program’s rules, the House of Representatives Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis said.

U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin is due to testify before the panel at 1:00 pm (1700 GMT) on Tuesday.

Democrats in Congress and the Trump administration have been at loggerheads since July over further steps to bolster the economy after Congress approved trillions of dollars in March to respond to the coronavirus pandemic.

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Voting by mail will 'work out just fine,' Sen. Scott says, dismissing Trump's fears of stolen election

Se. Tim Scott

Sen. Tim Scott, who delivered the closing speech at the Republican National Convention Monday night, said he is not concerned about potential fraud due to expanded mail-in-voting, contradicting President Donald Trump who accused Democrats of "trying to steal the election."

"I have a lot of confidence in our electoral process," the South Carolina Republican said when asked about Trump's fraud concerns on NBC's "Today" show Tuesday morning. "I'm very confident that we will have fair elections throughout this country."

Several states – including some with Republican governors or secretaries of state – have eased requirements for absentee ballots, or moved to send ballots to all registered voters, to give those concerned about coronavirus infection the option of avoiding potentially crowded polling stations. Trump has repeatedly railed against those efforts as opening the door to potential fraud, though experts say there is little evidence to support those concerns.

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