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Photo: Aaron Lavinsky/Star Tribune via Getty Images

Some areas of the U.S. are facing a shortage of nasal swabs, an essential material to test people for the novel coronavirus.

Why it matters: Coronavirus testing in the U.S. has been woefully lagging behind other countries — a criticism the Trump administration is trying to fix. Labs have been short on other materials like "RNA extraction" kits that are needed for testing.

Yes, but: The shortages aren't national — rather, they're confined to specific locations, one source with direct knowledge told me.

  • The Food and Drug Administration has published a list of alternative materials that can be used.

Go deeper: Why the U.S. is so far behind on coronavirus testing

Go deeper

Biden’s nightmare debut

President-elect Biden speaks in Wilmington on Nov. 24. Photo: Chandan Khanna/AFP via Getty Images

A dim, gloomy scene seems increasingly set for Joe Biden's debut as president.

The state of play: He'll address — virtually — a virus-weary nation, with record-high daily coronavirus deaths, a flu season near its peak, restaurants and small businesses shuttered by wintertime sickness and spread.

Using apps to prevent deadly police encounters

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Mobile phone apps are evolving in ways that can stop rather than simply document deadly police encounters with people of color — including notifying family and lawyers about potential violations in real time.

Why it matters: As states and cities face pressure to reform excessive force policies, apps that monitor police are becoming more interactive, gathering evidence against rogue officers as well as posting social media videos to shame the agencies.

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
15 hours ago - Technology

TikTok gets more time (again)

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The White House is again giving TikTok's Chinese parent company more to satisfy national security concerns, rather than initiating legal action, a source familiar with the situation tells Axios.

The state of play: China's ByteDance had until Friday to resolve issues raised by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the U.S. (CFIUS), which is chaired by Treasury secretary Steve Mnuchin. This was the company's third deadline, with CFIUS having provided two earlier extensions.