Rapid Evolution

Volume 31 Issue 5 | May 2017

Cover Story

From fish harvests to cottonwood forests, organisms display evidence that species change can occur on timescales that can influence ecological processes.

Featured Articles

image: The Proteasome: A Powerful Target for Manipulating Protein Levels

The Proteasome: A Powerful Target for Manipulating Protein Levels

By John Hines and Craig M. Crews | May 1, 2017

The proteasome’s ability to target and degrade specific proteins is proving useful to researchers studying protein function or developing treatments for diseases.

image: Understanding Body Ownership and Agency

Understanding Body Ownership and Agency

By Roman Liepelt and Jack Brooks | May 1, 2017

Understanding how people recognize and control their own bodies could help researchers develop therapies for those who’ve lost their sense of self.




Meet some of the people featured in the May 2017 issue of The Scientist.


Learning Your Stripes

Science’s lowest common denominator has always been patterns.

Speaking of Science

Notable Science Quotes

Climate change, research funding, race, and much more


Will Komodo Dragons Yield the Next Blockbuster Antibiotic?

The giant lizards have numerous microbicidal compounds in their blood.

Computers That Can Smell

Teams of modelers compete to develop algorithms for estimating how people will perceive a particular odor from its molecular characteristics.

Uncovering the Secrets of a Successful Pest

The green peach aphid can colonize new host plants with ease through rapid changes in gene expression.

Future Homes May Have Bioreactive Walls

Researchers are redesigning the humble brick to produce electricity, to clean water and air, and to harvest valuable compounds.


Opinion: Birds of a Feather?

Taking into account the interaction of nuclear and mitochondrial genes in birds holds the promise of more objectively defining what constitutes a species.

Modus Operandi

Phosphorylation at the Flick of a Switch

Incorporating light-controlled dimerization domains into kinases provides tight regulation of these enzymes.

The Literature

Macrophages Physically Relay Signals Between Cell Types

Time-lapse imaging shows the immune cells transferring chemical signals during pigment pattern formation in developing zebrafish.

Noncoding RNA Helps Cells Recover from DNA Damage

Scientists discover transcripts from the same gene that can express both proteins and noncoding RNA.  

Rare T Cells Fight Cancer

A new approach to immunotherapy finds that the immune-cell clonotypes that come to the rescue start out at very low frequencies.


Glia Guru

Ben Barres recast glial cells from supporting actors to star performers, crucial for synaptic plasticity in the brain and for preventing neurodegenerative disorders.

Scientist to Watch

Valerie Horsley Gets Under Skin

The Yale University cell and molecular biologist is probing the deep mysteries of epidermal cells.

Lab Tools

Picking Out Patterns

Machine-learning algorithms can automate the analysis of cell images and data.


Coming to Grips with Coauthor Responsibility

The scientific community struggles to define the duties of collaborators in assuring the integrity of published research.

Reading Frames

Why I Had My Sense of Flavor Genotyped

One person’s quest to get to the bottom of the unique way he experiences food


Embryonic Evolution Through Ernst Haeckel’s Eyes

The 19th century biologist’s drawings, tainted by scandal, helped bolster, then later dismiss, his biogenetic law.

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