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Plos Biology : Fire in the Quill, Volume 8

By: Armin Schneider
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Plos Biology : Alchemy and the New Age of Cardiac Muscle Cell Biol...

By: Kenneth R. Chien

Description : “Alchemy : a process of transforming something common into something

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Plos Biology : Evolution by Any Other Name ; Antibiotic Resistance...

By: Janis Antonovics
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Plos Biology : Structure of a Pheromone Receptor-associated Mhc Mo...

By: Andrej Sali

Description : Neurons in the murine vomeronasal organ (VNO) express a family of class Ib major histocompatibility complex (MHC) proteins (M10s) that interact with the V2R class of VNO receptors. This interaction may play a direct role in the detection of pheromonal cues that initiate reproductive and territorial behaviors. The crystal structure of M10.5, an M10 family member, is similar to that of classical MHC molecules. However, the M10.5 counterpart of the MHC peptide...

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Plos Biology : Trying to Avoid Your Sister, Volume 8

By: Jessica P. Lao
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Plos Biology : High-throughput Shape Analysis Reveals Structures i...

By: Wilkinson Kevin A.

Description : Replication and pathogenesis of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) is tightly linked to the structure of its RNA genome, but genome structure in infectious virions is poorly understood. We invent high-throughput SHAPE (selective 29-hydroxyl acylation analyzed by primer extension) technology, which uses many of the same tools as DNA sequencing, to quantify RNA backbone flexibility at single-nucleotide resolution and from which robust structural informati...

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Plos Biology : Caring for Offspring in a World of Cheats, Volume 11

By: Dieter Lukas

Description : Parents providing care to offspring face the same problem that exists in every biological system in which some individuals offer resources to others : cheaters, who exploit these benefits. In almost all species in which males contribute to parental care, females mate with multiple males. As a result, males frequently provide efforts for unrelated offspring at a cost to their own reproductive fitness. In a new study, Griffin et al. find that across a wide ra...

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Plos Biology : Polarised Asymmetric Inheritance of Accumulated Pro...

By: Peter Walter

Description : Disease-associated misfolded proteins or proteins damaged due to cellular stress are generally disposed via the cellular protein quality-control system. However, under saturating conditions, misfolded proteins will aggregate. In higher eukaryotes, these aggregates can be transported to accumulate in aggresomes at the microtubule organizing center. The fate of cells that contain aggresomes is currently unknown. Here we report that cells that have formed aggr...

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Plos Biology : Dysregulation of the Norepinephrine Transporter Sus...

By: Eric Nestler

Description : The mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) complex 2 (mTORC2) is a multimeric signaling unit that phosphorylates protein kinase B/Akt following hormonal and growth factor stimulation. Defective Akt phosphorylation at the mTORC2-catalyzed Ser473 site has been linked to schizophrenia. While human imaging and animal studies implicate a fundamental role for Akt signaling in prefrontal dopaminergic networks, the molecular mechanisms linking Akt phosphorylation to ...

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Plos Biology : Specification of Neuronal Identities by Feedforward...

By: William A. Harris

Description : Neuronal specification is often seen as a multistep process : earlier regulators confer broad neuronal identity and are followed by combinatorial codes specifying neuronal properties unique to specific subtypes. However, it is still unclear whether early regulators are re-deployed in subtype-specific combinatorial codes, and whether early patterning events act to restrict the developmental potential of postmitotic cells. Here, we use the differential peptid...

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Plos Biology : Osm-11 Facilitates Lin-12 Notch Signaling During Ca...

By: Hidetoshi Komatsu

Description : Notch signaling is critical for cell fate decisions during development. Caenorhabditis elegans and vertebrate Notch ligands are more diverse than classical Drosophila Notch ligands, suggesting possible functional complexities. Here, we describe a developmental role in Notch signaling for OSM-11, which has been previously implicated in defecation and osmotic resistance in C. elegans. We find that complete loss of OSM-11 causes defects in vulval precursor cel...

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Plos Biology : a Signaling Network for Patterning of Neuronal Conn...

By: Yuh Nung Jan

Description : The precise number and pattern of axonal connections generated during brain development regulates animal behavior. Therefore, understanding how developmental signals interact to regulate axonal extension and retraction to achieve precise neuronal connectivity is a fundamental goal of neurobiology. We investigated this question in the developing adult brain of Drosophila and find that it is regulated by crosstalk between Wnt, fibroblast growth factor (FGF) r...

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Plos Biology : Metagenome Annotation Using a Distributed Grid of U...

By: Pascal Hingamp
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Plos Biology : Protecting Science from Abuse Requires a Broader Fo...

By: Kai M. A. Chan
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Plos Biology : Trapping Conformational States Along Ligand-binding...

By: Gregory A. Petsko

Description : For several decades, molecular recognition has been considered one of the most fundamental processes in biochemistry. For enzymes, substrate binding is often coupled to conformational changes that alter the local environment of the active site to align the reactive groups for efficient catalysis and to reach the transition state. Adaptive substrate recognition is a well-known concept: however, it has been poorly characterized at a structural level because o...

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Plos Biology : Most ‘‘dark Matter’’ Transcripts Are Associated wit...

By: Sean R. Eddy

Description : A series of reports over the last few years have indicated that a much larger portion of the mammalian genome is transcribed than can be accounted for by currently annotated genes, but the quantity and nature of these additional transcripts remains unclear. Here, we have used data from single- and paired-end RNA-Seq and tiling arrays to assess the quantity and composition of transcripts in PolyA+ RNA from human and mouse tissues. Relative to tiling arrays, ...

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Plos Biology : White-opaque Switching in Natural Mtla, Volume 11

By: Joseph Heitman

Description : Phenotypic transitions play critical roles in host adaptation, virulence, and sexual reproduction in pathogenic fungi. A minority of natural isolates of Candida albicans, which are homozygous at the mating type locus (MTL, a/a or a/a), are known to be able to switch between two distinct cell types : white and opaque. It is puzzling that white-opaque switching has never been observed in the majority of natural C. albicans strains that have heterozygous MTL g...

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Plos Biology : Emergence of Young Human Genes After a Burst of Ret...

By: Ken Wolfe

Description : The origin of new genes through gene duplication is fundamental to the evolution of lineage- or species-specific phenotypic traits. In this report, we estimate the number of functional retrogenes on the lineage leading to humans generated by the high rate of retroposition (retroduplication) in primates. Extensive comparative sequencing and expression studies coupled with evolutionary analyses and simulations suggest that a significant proportion of recent r...

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Plos Biology : Alternative Mating Type Configurations A, Volume 9

By: Joseph Heitman

Description : Similar multicellular structures can evolve within the same organism that may have different evolutionary histories, be controlled by different regulatory pathways, and play similar but nonidentical roles. In the human fungal pathogen Candida albicans, a quite extraordinary example of this has occurred. Depending upon the configuration of the mating type locus (a/ a versus a/a or a/a), C. albicans forms alternative biofilms that appear similar morphological...

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Plos Biology : the You Gene Encodes an Egf-cub Protein Essential f...

By: Derek Stemple

Description : Hedgehog signaling is required for many aspects of development in vertebrates and invertebrates. Misregulation of the Hedgehog pathway causes developmental abnormalities and has been implicated in certain types of cancer. Largescale genetic screens in zebrafish have identified a group of mutations, termed you-class mutations, that share common defects in somite shape and in most cases disrupt Hedgehog signaling. These mutant embryos exhibit Ushaped somites ...

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