1. SWEET proteins found » A new class of proteins, dubbed SWEETs, transport glucose molecules out of plant, worm, and human cells. In some plants, SWEET proteins are co-opted by bacterial pathogens to deliver nutrition to the invaders.
L.Q. Chen et al., Nature, 468:527-32, 2010.
2. Good news for trauma » In a trial of more than 20,000 trauma victims, tranexamic acid, a pro-clotting agent often prescribed for excessive bleeding, was safe and reduced the risk of bleeding-related death—a finding likely to change clinical practice.
CRASH-2 trial collaborators, Lancet, 376:23-32, 2010.
3. Focus on focal adhesions » The architecture of focal adhesions—structures that mediate signaling and adhesion to the extracellular matrix—is described in vivid detail, showing several distinct strata including an integrin-signaling layer, an intermediate force-transduction layer, and an actin-regulatory layer.
P. Kanchanawong et al., Nature, 468:580-4, 2010.
4. Powerful tension » Tension stabilizes the attachment of microtubules to kinetochores during cell division in budding yeast, demonstrating how mechanical forces can modulate chromosome movement during replication.
B. Akiyoshi et al., Nature, 468:576-79. 2010.
5. Eukaryotic ribosome unveiled » The crystal structure of the translational machinery in yeast reveals unique interactions within and between the ribosome’s two subunits and promises to yield a better understanding of protein synthesis in eukaryotes.
A. Ben-Shem et al., Science, 330:1203-09, 2010.
6. Tracking B-cell movement » Applying GFP technology in a new way, researchers tracked B-cell maturation in the lymph nodes as the cells moved from an area of rapid proliferation to an area of optimum B-cell selection and back again, identifying the essential role of T helper cells in this transition.
7. The genome shuffle » In some cancers chromosomes are broken apart and stitched back together, resulting in many genomic rearrangements, contravening the model of slowly accumulating point mutations. The process, dubbed “chromothripsis,” occurs in about 2–3 percent of all cancers, across many subtypes, and is active in 25 percent of bone cancers.
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