FLICKR, DANIEL OCAMPO
Ribosomes may not be indiscriminate translation factories, but may actively select the mRNAs with which they interact. Loss of ribosomal protein Rpl38 in mice alters the expression of a specific subset of patterning mRNAs—resulting in tissue-patterning defects—but leaves global translation unchanged. The finding represents a potential new type of post-transcriptional gene regulation.
Although genes from both parents contribute to embryonic development in plants, the maternal transcripts dominate at first, with paternal genes switching on later, settling a long-standing debate on the contribution of male and female alleles in plant development.
Cells can relay a touch or change in stiffness by initiating molecules to signal transcription of genes that regulate cell survival and differentiation. Researchers now find a set of organ growth proteins, TAZ and YAP, playing a role in the signaling cascade.
Early development is governed by the response of cells to a chemical gradient that signals cell division, but how a gradient could relay the tight control over development even under environmental fluctuations was unclear. Researchers have now learned that the gradient initiates a feedback loop, activating cell division in a way that reduces the influence of the environment.
M. Paulsen et al., "Negative feedback in the bone morphogenetic protein 4 (BMP4) synexpression group governs its dynamic signaling range and canalizes development," PNAS, 108:10202-7, 2011. Free F1000 Evaluation
When cells are injured, their actomyosin filaments create a ring around the wound and contract to close the wound when exposed to the adhesion molecule E-cadherin, which presumably also helps anchor the contractile ring to the membrane.
Every time a yeast cell buds, it produces progeny without any markers of aging. Researchers identified several genes that appear to play a role in process of resetting the age-clock.
A new study describes the migration pattern of neuronal cells in mouse brain during development, identifying the genes involved in cell polarization, a process that contributes to their pattern of radial distribution in the part of the brain that will form the cerebral cortex.
The F1000 Top 7 is a snapshot of the highest ranked articles from a 30-day period on Faculty of 1000 in Developmental Biology, as calculated on July 7, 2011. Faculty Members evaluate and rate the most important papers in their field. To see the latest rankings, search the database, and read daily evaluations, visit http://f1000.com.