Subject: PLOS Biology Volume 16(8) August 2018 Content-Type: text/html; charset="utf-8" Content-Transfer-Encoding: 8bit


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New Articles in PLOS Biology

PUBLISHED: August 01, 2018 to August 31, 2018

Research Matters

Emerging plant disease epidemics: Biological research is key but not enough

In this Research Matters article, Rodrigo Almeida argues that considering the social context of emerging plant diseases and effective science communication are essential for the management epidemics.

The small things can matter

This Research Matters article remembers the early days of what became known as "metagenomics," as experienced by the author during his development as a scientist.


Compositionality in animals and humans

A key feature of human language is our ability to combine words into larger meaningful structures. This Essay argues that comparison with call combinations in non-human animals sheds light on the evolutionary origins of this ability.

Unsolved Mystery

Why is congenital Zika syndrome asymmetrically distributed among human populations?

Birth defects caused by congenital Zika virus have a heterogeneous spatio-temporal distribution; this Unsolved Mystery proposes that this could be explained by the interaction of diverse genetic and socio-environmental factors.


Provenance and risk in transfer of biological materials

While risk aversion can dominate in negotiations for Material Transfer Agreements, this Perspective article maintains that examples of good practice provide us with strategies to improve the process for this important method of tracking provenance.

Reconciling corruption with conservation triage: Should investments shift from the last best places?

Community Page

Best Match: New relevance search for PubMed

This Community Page article presents Best Match, a new relevance search algorithm for PubMed that allows readers to use machine learning to find articles that match their needs.

Research Articles

Learning from the past: A reverberation of past errors in the cerebellar climbing fiber signal

To improve movements the cerebellum relies on past "errors" ' deviations from desired outcomes. This study shows that the climbing fiber system conserves error information for future manifestations of the behavior.

FusC, a member of the M16 protease family acquired by bacteria for iron piracy against plants

Under environmental selection bacteria have evolved complex protein import pathways to access essential protein-bound nutrients, in order to dominate in an ecological niche.

The lysolipid transporter Mfsd2a regulates lipogenesis in the developing brain

Transport of lysophosphatidylcholine that contains essential polyunsaturated fatty acids into the brain by Mfsd2a during brain development is critical for regulation of Sterol Regulatory-Element Binding Proteins (SREBPs) and for postnatal brain growth.

FSP1-positive fibroblasts are adipogenic niche and regulate adipose homeostasis

Where do fat cells come from? This study identifies FSP1-positive fibroblasts in the stromal vascular fraction of white adipose tissue as the niche for preadipocytes, acting to maintain the preadipocyte pool and its differentiation potential.

KDM5 histone demethylases repress immune response via suppression of STING

Epigenetic silencing of the immune response by some pathogens and cancer cells is mediated by the histone H3K4 lysine demethylases KDM5B and KDM5C; inhibition of KDM5 activity may prove useful for the treatment of pathogen infection and cancer.

Canonical PRC2 function is essential for mammary gland development and affects chromatin compaction in mammary organoids

The canonical function of PRC2 (formation of the epigenetic mark H3K27me3) is essential for development of the mammary gland, acting through the repression of alternate transcription programs and maintenance of chromatin states.

Representational interactions during audiovisual speech entrainment: Redundancy in left posterior superior temporal gyrus and synergy in left motor cortex

Information decomposition of audio-visual speech perception yields novel insights into multisensory integration; information redundant between audio and visual modalities is represented by the left posterior superior temporal gyrus/sulcus, while synergistic information is represented in left motor cortex.

Tissue-specific degradation of essential centrosome components reveals distinct microtubule populations at microtubule organizing centers

An optimized tissue-specific degradation strategy reveals that intestinal epithelial cells in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans require different proteins and mechanisms to build and organize centrosomal versus membrane-associated microtubules.

The taste of ribonucleosides: Novel macronutrients essential for larval growth are sensed by Drosophila gustatory receptor proteins

The main appetitive tastes ' sweet, umami and oleogustus ' are respectively tuned to the recognition of sugars, amino acids and fats. This report reveals a novel taste modality in Drosophila larvae, the taste for ribonucleosides, and identifies distinct receptors for their recognition.

Nitrogen fixation in a landrace of maize is supported by a mucilage-associated diazotrophic microbiota

An indigenous Mexican landrace of maize produces a mucilage on its aerial roots that hosts nitrogen-fixing bacteria and contributes up to 82% of the plant's nitrogen requirements.

Surf4 (Erv29p) binds amino-terminal tripeptide motifs of soluble cargo proteins with different affinities, enabling prioritization of their exit from the endoplasmic reticulum

This study reveals the existence of an ancient process for prioritized trafficking of problematic soluble cargo proteins out of the endoplasmic reticulum via the affinity of the Surf4/Erv29p receptor for different N-terminal tripeptides.

Transcriptional programming of lipid and amino acid metabolism by the skeletal muscle circadian clock

Comparison of in vivo genomic binding patterns of transcription factors BMAL1 and REV-ERB with 24-hour transcriptional and metabolic changes upon their loss reveals how the circadian clock directs the diurnal rhythms of muscle metabolism.

Heterogeneity and longevity of antibody memory to viruses and vaccines

How long do individuals maintain protective levels of antibodies after vaccination or infection? This study shows that some individuals make longer-lasting responses to vaccines than others and quantifies how variation between individuals affects the decay of immunity at the population level.

A non-cell-autonomous actin redistribution enables isotropic retinal growth

During vertebrate retinal development, a non-cell autonomous redistribution of actin is prerequisite for a timely change of cell shape, which in turn enables isotropic growth of the tissue.

Evolutionary †diversification of the HAP2 membrane insertion motifs to drive gamete fusion across eukaryotes

Structure-function dissection of the conserved transmembrane protein HAP2 defines a mechanism for target membrane insertion during gamete fusion, and provides insights into how this process evolved to accommodate the diversity of sexual reproductive systems.

Serial representation of items during working memory maintenance at letter-selective cortical sites

Analysis of human intracranial electrocorticography data demonstrates that items in working memory are activated sequentially and that the activation is coordinated by coupled theta/alpha and gamma oscillations.

Leaky resistance and the conditions for the existence of lytic bacteriophage

A high rate of either phenotypic or genetic transition from resistance to susceptibility allows phages to persist in populations dominated by bacteria within which the phages cannot replicate.

Timescales of influenza A/H3N2 antibody dynamics

This study considers individual histories of influenza infection and immune dynamics acting at multiple timescales, enabling the authors to quantify antibody dynamics and estimate historical attack rates.

Axonal sodium channel NaV1.2 drives granule cell dendritic GABA release and rapid odor discrimination

Release of neurotransmitter by dendrites resembles release from presynaptic terminals on axons; voltage-dependent sodium channels in dendritic spines are needed for synchronous GABA release, inhibition of olfactory bulb mitral cells and rapid odor discrimination.

Within-host competition can delay evolution of drug resistance in malaria

Mathematical modeling suggests that delayed emergence of drug-resistant malaria in sub-Saharan Africa may be caused by within-host competition between drug-sensitive and drug-resistant parasites.

The mammalian decidual cell evolved from a cellular stress response

The decidual cell, a specialized cell type in the uterus of humans and closely-related mammals, evolved by hijacking a gene regulatory network that controlled a pregnancy-related stress response in ancestral mammals.

A dual-specific macrophage colony-stimulating factor antagonist of c-FMS and alpha vbeta 3 integrin for osteoporosis therapy

A combinatorial methodology enables engineering of the natural ligand M-CSF to convert it from an agonist into a potent bispecific inhibitor of the osteoclast cell surface receptors c-FMS and alpha vbeta 3 integrin, with therapeutic potential for osteoporosis.

Prd1 associates with the clathrin adaptor alpha -Adaptin and the kinesin-3 Imac/Unc-104 to govern dendrite pruning in Drosophila

Dendrite-pruning during maturation of the Drosophila nervous system is governed by a protein complex containing Prd1, alpha -Adaptin and Imac/Unc-104, acting via endo-lysosomal degradation of the cell adhesion molecule Neuroglian.

A high-throughput screen of real-time ATP levels in individual cells reveals mechanisms of energy failure

A FRET-based high-throughput screen that measures ATPs levels in individual mammalian cells identifies genes that regulate ATP level, as well as genetic defects that are responsive to energy-based therapies such as coenzyme Q10 supplementation.

Protein aggregates encode epigenetic memory of stressful encounters in individual Escherichia coli cells

Protein aggregates in Escherichia coli tend to emerge in response to sub-lethal proteotoxic exposures, after which these asymmetrically inherited structures serve as stress-induced, epigenetic memory that protects their carrier cells against subsequent proteotoxic stress.

The memory for time and space differentially engages the proximal and distal parts of the hippocampal subfields CA1 and CA3

A study of temporal and/or spatial information processing further supports the existence of subnetworks segregated along the proximodistal axis of hippocampal CA1 and CA3 that preferentially process spatial or non-spatial information.

BRAF and AXL oncogenes drive RIPK3 expression loss in cancer

Symptoms of systemic lupus erythematosus are diagnosed in leptin transgenic pigs

Short Reports

The mitochondrial transporter SLC25A25 links ciliary TRPP2 signaling and cellular metabolism

A genetic screen identifies the calcium-regulated mitochondrial ATP transporter SLC25A25 as an evolutionarily conserved downstream effector of the ciliary transient receptor potential channel polycystin-2 (TRPP2).

Centromeric signaling proteins boost G1 cyclin degradation and modulate cell size in budding yeast

It has long been known that cell size correlates with ploidy, but the mechanism underlying this has been unclear. A study in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae shows that the number of centromeres modulates G1 cyclin levels and, as a consequence, cell size.

Repeated translocation of a gene cassette drives sex-chromosome turnover in strawberries

The DNA sequence that determines the sex of wild strawberries has repeatedly jumped to new genomic locations during evolution, leading to increasingly differentiated sex chromosomes.

Methods and Resources

Long-term all-optical interrogation of cortical neurons in awake-behaving nonhuman primates

A combination of single- and two-photon optogenetic stimulation with two-photon calcium imaging allows all-optical interrogation of targeted neuronal populations and single-neurons in awake, behaving non-human primates.

A systems genetics resource and analysis of sleep regulation in the mouse

Systems genetics analysis of a newly established mouse reference knowledge base comprising sleep-wake behaviour, brain activity, transcriptomic and metabolomic data reveals novel pathways implicated in sleep homeostasis.

Plasmodium vivax-like genome sequences shed new insights into Plasmodium vivax biology and evolution

The first genomes of great ape Plasmodium vivax-like, the closest relative to the human malaria pathogen Plasmodium vivax, reveal species-specific evolution, and identify key candidate genes potentially involved in adaptation to humans.

CRISPR/Cas9 gene editing for the creation of an MGAT1-deficient CHO cell line to control HIV-1 vaccine glycosylation

Formal Comments

Call combinations in birds and the evolution of compositional syntax

Recent studies on bird calls provide the first evidence for compositional syntax in a non-human communication system. This Formal Comment reviews these findings to refute recent criticism by Johan Bolhuis and co-authors.

Resilient reefs may exist, but can larval dispersal models find them?

A recent article claimed to discover the Great Barrier Reef's "life-support system". This Formal Comment shows that equally valid models identify very different life-support systems, casting doubt on the robustness of these results.

Response to Bode and colleagues: ėResilient reefs may exist, but can larval dispersal models find them?'

The authors of a Research Article in PLOS Biology respond to a recent Formal Comment, arguing why models of coral larva dispersal may provide useful insight for reef management.


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