Subject: PLOS Biology Volume 15(10) October 2017 Content-Type: text/html; charset="utf-8" Content-Transfer-Encoding: 8bit


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New Articles in PLOS Biology

PUBLISHED: October 01, 2017 to October 31, 2017

Unsolved Mystery

Unsolved mysteries: Magnetoreception'A sense without a receptor

How animals detect magnetic fields is a longstanding question in biology. This Unsolved Mystery article explores the mechanisms and molecules that might underlie magnetoreception, advocating an interdisciplinary approach to this fascinating scientific problem.


Imagining the "open" university: Sharing scholarship to improve research and education

This Perspective article argues that universities should take action to support open scholarship that benefits society and to return to their core missions of knowledge dissemination, community engagement, and public good.

Community Page

Ethoscopes: An open platform for high-throughput ethomics

This Community Page article presents a DIY approach to building ethoscope machines able to analyse behaviour of fruit flies in a high-throughput fashion. Ethoscopes are powerful yet accessible, and can be used by scientists and enthusiasts alike.

Research Articles

The sex of specific neurons controls female body growth in Drosophila

Female Drosophila melanogaster fruit flies grow faster than males during larval development and this depends upon expression of the sex determination gene Sex-lethal in two specific subsets of neurons in the brain.

Nonlatching positive feedback enables robust bimodality by decoupling expression noise from the mean

A combination of computational modeling and experiment explains how HIV's gene regulatory circuit architecture is optimized to ensure a probabilistic decision between alternate fates."

Short Reports

Crowd vocal learning induces vocal dialects in bats: Playback of conspecifics shapes fundamental frequency usage by pups

Experimental playback of manipulated calls induced vocal dialects in fruit bats, demonstrating their ability to learn vocalizations from the surrounding crowd in the cave.

Methods and Resources

The sea cucumber genome provides insights into morphological evolution and visceral regeneration

The high-quality genome sequence of the sea cucumber Apostichopus japonicus provides a resource for research on echinoderm and deuterostome biology, comparative genomics and commercial breeding

Quantifying the effects of temperature on mosquito and parasite traits that determine the transmission potential of human malaria

A comprehensive study of the life history traits of the mosquito Anopheles stephensi and the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum under a range of temperatures reveals new insights into the transmission dynamics of this important disease.

A molecular atlas of the developing ectoderm defines neural, neural crest, placode, and nonneural progenitor identity in vertebrates

Microdissection of the developing frog ectoderm combined with transcriptomics yields positional information and gene co-expression patterns, allowing computational retrieval of gene expression relationships relevant to development, cancer, evo-devo and stem cell biology.

Prediction of drug cocktail effects when the number of measurements is limited

Finding the best cocktail from a given set of drugs is challenging because the number of experiments needed can be prohibitive; this study presents a mathematical model that can predict the effects of drug combinations for cancer and infection when experimental data are scarce.

Formal Comments

Additional support for RCR: A validated article-level measure of scientific influence

The Relative Citation Ratio (RCR) is a field-normalized and time-independent measure of scientific influence. This response to an accompanying Formal Comment provides further evidence of the metric's stability and utility.

A critical evaluation of the algorithm behind the Relative Citation Ratio (RCR)

The American National Institutes of Health (NIH) have introduced a new metric to evaluate the influence of scientific research articles, the Relative Citation Ratio. This Formal Comment raises several concerns about its validity.


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