Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Nature contents: 10 August 2017

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  journal cover  
Nature Volume 548 Issue 7666
This Week  
Drug approval needs a helping hand
It's time for researchers to lend their expertise to expediting the arrival of cutting-edge therapies that are waiting in the wings.
SI units need reform to avoid confusion
A flaw in the system leaves physicists grappling with dimensionless units.
World View  
Commit to talks on patient data and public health
Gene-edited embryos are exciting, but the truly urgent conversations concern genomic medicine, says Vivienne Parry.
Seven Days  
Telescope protest, GM salmon and a giant 'dead zone'
The week in science: 4–10 August 2017.
Research Highlights  
This issue's Research Highlights
Selections from the scientific literature.

Publishing online monthly, Nature Astronomy aims to bring together astronomers, astrophysicists and planetary scientists. In addition to the latest advances in research, we offer Comment and Opinion pieces on topical subjects of relevance to our community, including the societal impact of astronomy and updates on telescopes and space missions.

News in Focus
Cosmic map reveals a not-so-lumpy Universe
Odd results could still be consistent with the 'standard model' of cosmology.
Davide Castelvecchi
  Home-grown scientists step up to save Africa's primates
Scientific network aims to train a generation of African leaders in primate research.
Declan Butler
Insomnia linked to premature birth in study of 3 million mothers
Women with sleep disorders were about twice as likely to deliver babies more than six weeks early.
Amy Maxmen
  Mysteries of Sun's corona on view during upcoming eclipse
From ground, sky and space, researchers are ready to test latest technologies on the Great American Eclipse.
Alexandra Witze
Citizen scientists chase total solar eclipse
Non-scientists are being recruited to collect data on everything from the Sun's outer atmosphere to animal behaviour.
Rachael Lallensack
  First genetically engineered salmon sold in Canada
US firm AquaBounty Technologies says that its transgenic fish has hit the market after a 25-year wait.
Emily Waltz
How to map the circuits that define us
Neuroscientists want to understand how tangles of neurons produce complex behaviours, but even the simplest networks defy understanding.
Kerri Smith
Nature Podcast 10 August 2017
This week, ancient mammal relatives, complex brain maps, and a 19th century solar eclipse.
Shake up conferences
Emojis, smartphone technologies and revamped guidelines would boost transparency at scientific meetings, say Shai D. Silberberg and colleagues.
Shai D. Silberberg, Devon C. Crawford, Robert Finkelstein et al.
Books and Arts  
Evolution: Parallel lives
Kevin Padian hails a stunning, provocative book probing evolutionary mechanisms.
Kevin Padian
Books in brief
Barbara Kiser reviews five of the week's best science picks.
Barbara Kiser
Palaeobiology: Ensure equal access to ancient DNA
Cheryl Makarewicz, Nimrod Marom, Guy Bar-Oz
  Blockchains: Crypto-control your own energy supply
Merlinda Andoni, Valentin Robu, David Flynn
Medical research: Next decade's goals for rare diseases
Christopher P. Austin, Hugh J. S. Dawkins
  Taxonomy: stable taxon boundaries
Norbert Holstein, Federico Luebert
Connecting big ideas to benefit
Nicky Phillips
Charting influence
Comment: Turning science into social outcomes
For innovation to bring public benefit, mapping the influence of academic papers is just the beginning.
Richard Jefferson
Some papers have a profound and obvious influence on future research and industry applications. Patents citing these life science papers indicate their bearing on developments which have widespread health implications.
Branwen Morgan, Annabel McGilvray
Profile: Michael Sporn: A legacy of greater knowledge
For the love of discovery, a biochemist freely shared the research which laid the groundwork for widely-used drugs.
Elie Dolgin
Comment: Measure for measure
The system for assessing the link between science and innovation is flawed.
Aidan Byrne
On the right track
Trace people, not papers; a new way to measure the impact of science on society.
Neil Savage
Trials and tribulations
Herceptin changed the nature of cancer treatment, but this life-extending drug may never have seen the light of day without parallel breakthroughs on many fronts.
Sujata Gupta
A guide to the Nature Index
A description of the terminology and methodology used in this supplement, and a guide to the functionality available free online at
Genetics: Role of mutation in fly-wing evolution
Analysis of wing variation within and between fly species reveals an unexpectedly slow evolutionary rate. Variations due to mutation and interspecific differences are similar, perhaps as a result of complex genetic interactions.
Neurobiology: A bitter–sweet symphony
Information about taste sensations, such as bitter or sweet, is relayed from the mouse tongue to the brain through taste-specific pathways. It emerges that semaphorin proteins guide the wiring of these pathways.
Climate science: Origins of Atlantic decadal swings
Temperature variability in the North Atlantic Ocean is the result of many competing physical processes, but the relative roles of these processes is a source of contention. Here, scientists present two perspectives on the debate.
New gliding mammaliaforms from the Jurassic
Maiopatagium, a haramiyid from the Jurassic Tiaojishan Formation (around 160 million years ago) of China was specialised for gliding with a patagium (wing membrane) and a fused wishbone, reminiscent of that of birds.
Identification of essential genes for cancer immunotherapy
The authors describe a two-cell-type CRISPR screen to identify tumour-intrinsic genes that regulate the sensitivity of cancer cells to effector T cell function.
Satellite-to-ground quantum key distribution
Rewiring the taste system
Taste-receptor cells use distinct semaphorins to guide wiring of the peripheral taste system; targeted ectopic expression of SEMA3A or SEMA7A leads to bitter neurons responding to sweet tastes or sweet neurons responding to bitter tastes.
Chaotic dynamics in nanoscale NbO2 Mott memristors for analogue computing
A relaxation oscillator incorporating nanoscale niobium dioxide memristors that exhibit both a current- and a temperature-controlled negative differential resistance produces chaotic dynamics that aid biomimetic computing.
Electronic in-plane symmetry breaking at field-tuned quantum criticality in CeRhIn5
Electronic nematicity is observed in a heavy-fermion superconductor, CeRhIn5, suggesting a close link between unconventional superconductivity and the appearance of nematicity.
mRNA 3′ uridylation and poly(A) tail length sculpt the mammalian maternal transcriptome
TUT4 and TUT7 mediate 3′ uridylation of mRNA transcripts, preferentially those with short poly(A) tails; in the absence of TUT4 and TUT7, oocytes cannot mature and female mice are infertile.
Structural insights into ligand recognition by the lysophosphatidic acid receptor LPA6
Determination of the crystal structure of the zebrafish LPA6 receptor shows that the lipid ligand binds to an unusual ligand-binding pocket in the receptor that is laterally accessible through the membrane.
m6A mRNA methylation controls T cell homeostasis by targeting the IL-7/STAT5/SOCS pathways
The authors assess the role of N 6-methyladenosine in T cell development and function, and show that RNA methylation controls T cell homeostasis by regulating IL-7-mediated STAT5 activation.
Genome-scale activation screen identifies a lncRNA locus regulating a gene neighbourhood
Long noncoding RNAs are investigated using a CRISPR–Cas9 activation screen and shown to confer BRAF inhibitor resistance on melanoma cells through various local mechanisms.
An early modern human presence in Sumatra 73,000–63,000 years ago
Morphological analysis of teeth found at Lida Ajer shows that these belong to Homo sapiens, indicating that modern humans were in Sumatra between 73,000 and 63,000 years ago.
Mutation predicts 40 million years of fly wing evolution
A detailed analysis of fly wing phenotypes reveals a strong positive relationship between variation produced by mutation, standing genetic variation, and evolutionary rate over the past 40 million years.
New evidence for mammaliaform ear evolution and feeding adaptation in a Jurassic ecosystem
The fossil of a gliding mammal from the Tiaojishan Formation of China displays many unique features of its ears, teeth and tooth-replacement pattern, illustrating the great diversity of stem mammals living in the Jurassic period.
Ground-to-satellite quantum teleportation
Brief Communications Arising  
Role of stem-cell divisions in cancer risk
Cristian Tomasetti, Rick Durrett, Marek Kimmel et al.
Wu et al. reply
Song Wu, Wei Zhu, Yusuf A. Hannun
News and Views  
Stem cells: The cost of perpetual youth
Thomas P. Zwaka
Applied physics: Optical sensing gets exceptional
Mikael C. Rechtsman
Ecology: Contests between species aid biodiversity
James P. O'Dwyer
Charles River has proudly partnered with the EBD Group to provide the scientific program for this year's BioPharm America Conference. Be a part of this two-day conference that aims to bridge the gap between drug discovery and clinical application.
Evolution: Skull secrets of an ancient ape
Brenda R. Benefit
Therapeutics: Click and discover
George S. Vassiliou, Shankar Balasubramanian
Environmental science: Trends in ecosystem recovery from drought
Sonia I. Seneviratne, Philippe Ciais
New infant cranium from the African Miocene sheds light on ape evolution
Description of the most complete fossil skull of an infant ape recovered from the Miocene epoch of Kenya, assigned to a new species in the genus Nyanzapithecus.
Isaiah Nengo, Paul Tafforeau, Christopher C. Gilbert et al.
The complete connectome of a learning and memory centre in an insect brain
The complete, synapse-resolution connectome of the Drosophila larval mushroom body.
Katharina Eichler, Feng Li, Ashok Litwin-Kumar et al.
Genetic origins of the Minoans and Mycenaeans
New genome-wide data for ancient, Bronze Age individuals, including Minoans, Mycenaeans, and southwestern Anatolians, show that Minoans and Mycenaeans were genetically very similar yet distinct, supporting the idea of continuity but not isolation in the history of populations of the Aegean.
Iosif Lazaridis, Alissa Mittnik, Nick Patterson et al.
High-temperature crystallization of nanocrystals into three-dimensional superlattices
A bottom-up process to achieve rapid growth of micrometre-sized three-dimensional nanocrystal superlattices during colloidal synthesis at high temperatures is revealed by in situ small-angle X-ray scattering; the process is applicable to several colloidal materials.
Liheng Wu, Joshua J. Willis, Ian Salmon McKay et al.
Global patterns of drought recovery
A global analysis of gross primary productivity reveals that drought recovery is driven by climate and carbon cycling, with recovery longest in the tropics and high northern latitudes, and with impacts increasing over the twentieth century.
Christopher R. Schwalm, William R. L. Anderegg, Anna M. Michalak et al.
Artificial light at night as a new threat to pollination
The pollination service provided by nocturnal flower visitors is disrupted near streetlamps, which leads to a reduced reproductive output of the plant that cannot be compensated for by daytime pollinators; in addition, the structure of combined nocturnal and diurnal pollination networks facilitates the spread of the consequences of disrupted night-time pollination to daytime pollinators.
Eva Knop, Leana Zoller, Remo Ryser et al.
No large population of unbound or wide-orbit Jupiter-mass planets
In an analysis of a large sample of microlensing events, a few suggest the existence of Earth-mass free-floating planets, but only the expected number of Jupiter-mass free-floating objects were detected.
Przemek Mróz, Andrzej Udalski, Jan Skowron et al.
Enhanced sensitivity at higher-order exceptional points
The response of a ternary, parity–time-symmetric system that exhibits a third-order exceptional point increases as a function of the cube-root of induced perturbations.
Hossein Hodaei, Absar U. Hassan, Steffen Wittek et al.
Derivation of ground-state female ES cells maintaining gamete-derived DNA methylation
Derivation of female mouse embryonic stem cells under certain conditions induces a loss of DNA methylation and erasure of genomic imprints, which are not recovered and that may contribute to observed impaired development.
Masaki Yagi, Satoshi Kishigami, Akito Tanaka et al.
Exceptional points enhance sensing in an optical microcavity
Tuning optical microcavities to exceptional points enhances their ability to sense nanoscale objects, owing to the topological features of exceptional points.
Weijian Chen, Şahin Kaya Özdemir, Guangming Zhao et al.
Higher-order interactions stabilize dynamics in competitive network models
Communities that are very rich in species could persist thanks to the stabilizing role of higher-order interactions, in which the presence of a species influences the interaction between other species.
Jacopo Grilli, György Barabás, Matthew J. Michalska-Smith et al.
Metabolic control of TH17 and induced Treg cell balance by an epigenetic mechanism
Metabolic changes in T cells can affect the genomic methylation status of key transcription factors and regulate the fate decision between induced regulatory T cells and T helper 17 cells.
Tao Xu, Kelly M. Stewart, Xiaohu Wang et al.
Prolonged Mek1/2 suppression impairs the developmental potential of embryonic stem cells
Long-term culture of male embryonic stem cells in naive conditions containing Mek1/2 and Gsk3a/b inhibitors leads to irreversible changes in epigenetic and genomic stability that compromise their in vivo developmental potential.
Jiho Choi, Aaron J. Huebner, Kendell Clement et al.
Tumours with class 3 BRAF mutants are sensitive to the inhibition of activated RAS
Hypoactive BRAF mutants bind more tightly than wild type to the upstream regulator RAS, thus amplifying ERK signalling; tumours expressing these mutants require coexistent mechanisms for RAS activation to grow and are sensitive to their inhibition.
Zhan Yao, Rona Yaeger, Vanessa S. Rodrik-Outmezguine et al.
A Braf kinase-inactive mutant induces lung adenocarcinoma
Kinase-inactive Braf mutants can initiate the development of lung adenocarcinoma in mice; co-expression of activated Kras enhances tumour initiation and progression, and wild-type Braf is required to sustain tumorigenesis.
Patricia Nieto, Chiara Ambrogio, Laura Esteban-Burgos et al.
Proteins evolve on the edge of supramolecular self-assembly
Introducing a single 'sticky' (hydrophobic) amino acid by point mutation into symmetric protein complexes frequently triggers their association into higher-order assemblies, without affecting their native fold and structure.
Hector Garcia-Seisdedos, Charly Empereur-Mot, Nadav Elad et al.
Careers & Jobs
Funding: Austerity bites deeply
Anna Petherick
Turning point: Galactic groundbreaker
Virginia Gewin
Seconds to disaster.
Vernor Vinge
  Science jobs of the week


Scientific Officer 1 - Clinical and Experimental Pharmacology Group


Cancer Research UK Manchester Institute 


Postdoctoral researcher


Yale University School of Medicine 


Postdoctoral Research Fellow


The University of Queensland - School of Biomedical Sciences 


Position for a Post-Doctoral Research Fellow in Functional Cancer Genomics and DNA Transposase Biology


Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC)  


Dean / Graduate School of Basic Medical Sciences


New York Medical College (NYMC) 


Institute Associate Scientist III - Mouse Modeling Microinjectionist


MD Anderson Cancer Center 


PhD student / candidate, project on nanobodies / invadosomes / protein interference / super resolution microscopy.


Ghent University 


Postdoctoral Position in Microbiome Research


Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York  


Stanford Cardiovascular Institute and Department of Medicine Assistant or Associate Professor Position


Stanford University Cardiovascular Institute and Department of Medicine 


Research Associate


University of Bristol 


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natureevents directory featured events


Global experts meeting on Hospital and Clinical Pharmacy


30.07.18 Melbourne, Australia


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