Volume 522 Issue 7554


Health plan p.5

Proposals to improve the international emergency response to disease outbreaks in the wake of the Ebola epidemic should be implemented — but local solutions are the best defence.

doi: 10.1038/522005a

Misplaced faith p.6

The public trusts scientists much more than scientists think. But should it?

doi: 10.1038/522006a

To Pluto p.6

The coming months promise to shed new light on the Solar System’s underworld.

doi: 10.1038/522006b


News Features

CRISPR, the disruptor p.20

A powerful gene-editing technology is the biggest game changer to hit biology since PCR. But with its huge potential come pressing concerns.

doi: 10.1038/522020a

The billion-dollar biotech p.26

Moderna Therapeutics has big ambitions and a bankroll to match. How a fledgling start-up became one of the most highly valued private drug firms ever.

doi: 10.1038/522026a

News & Views

Exclusive networks in the sea p.36

The identification of an exchange of nutrients and signalling molecules between a planktonic alga and a bacterium demonstrates that targeted mutualistic interactions occur across domains of life in the oceans. See Letter p.98

doi: 10.1038/nature14530

Diversity in the lymphatic vasculature p.37

Two studies of the cells that give rise to lymphatic vessels reveal that precursors arise from unexpected sources, demonstrating that the origins of this vasculature are more diverse than anticipated. See Articles p.56 & p.62

doi: 10.1038/nature14523

Precise control of localized signals p.38

The tumour-suppressor protein PTEN is mostly found in the cell cytoplasm, tethered to endosome vesicles. This localization regulates the enzyme's activity towards specific lipids and influences its control of cell growth.

doi: 10.1038/nature14531

Pluto leads the way in planet formation p.40

Images from the Hubble Space Telescope cast new light on the orbits, shapes and sizes of Pluto's small satellites. The analysis comes just before a planned reconnaissance by the first spacecraft to visit them. See Article p.45

doi: 10.1038/522040a

Opening LOX to metastasis p.41

New findings implicate the enzyme lysyl oxidase (LOX), secreted by oxygen-deprived breast cancer cells, in inducing bone lesions that precede and facilitate the spread of the cancer cells to the bone. See Letter p.106

doi: 10.1038/nature14529

Proton smasher spots rare particle decays p.42

The extremely rare decays of particles known as neutral B mesons have been observed at CERN's Large Hadron Collider. The result may be a glimpse of physics beyond that of the standard model of particle physics. See Letter p.68

doi: 10.1038/nature14520


Cardiac lymphatics are heterogeneous in origin and respond to injury p.62

The lymphatic system is thought to be derived by transdifferentiation of venous endothelium; this study shows that the origin of cardiac lymphatics is in fact more heterogeneous, including both venous and non-venous origins and that lymphangiogenesis occurs in the adult heart following myocardial infarction and can be enhanced to improve heart function.

doi: 10.1038/nature14483


Observation of the rare Bs0µ+µ decay from the combined analysis of CMS and LHCb data OPEN p.68

The standard model of particle physics describes the fundamental particles and their interactions via the strong, electromagnetic and weak forces. It provides precise predictions for measurable quantities that can be tested experimentally. The probabilities, or branching fractions, of the strange B meson () and the B0 meson decaying into two oppositely charged muons (μ+ and μ) are especially interesting because of their sensitivity to theories that extend the standard model. The standard model predicts that the and decays are very rare, with about four of the former occurring for every billion mesons produced, and one of the latter occurring for every ten billion B0 mesons. A difference in the observed branching fractions with respect to the predictions of the standard model would provide a direction in which the standard model should be extended. Before the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN started operating, no evidence for either decay mode had been found. Upper limits on the branching fractions were an order of magnitude above the standard model predictions. The CMS (Compact Muon Solenoid) and LHCb (Large Hadron Collider beauty) collaborations have performed a joint analysis of the data from proton–proton collisions that they collected in 2011 at a centre-of-mass energy of seven teraelectronvolts and in 2012 at eight teraelectronvolts. Here we report the first observation of the µ+µ decay, with a statistical significance exceeding six standard deviations, and the best measurement so far of its branching fraction. Furthermore, we obtained evidence for the µ+µ decay with a statistical significance of three standard deviations. Both measurements are statistically compatible with standard model predictions and allow stringent constraints to be placed on theories beyond the standard model. The LHC experiments will resume taking data in 2015, recording proton–proton collisions at a centre-of-mass energy of 13 teraelectronvolts, which will approximately double the production rates of and B0 mesons and lead to further improvements in the precision of these crucial tests of the standard model.

doi: 10.1038/nature14474

New cosmogenic burial ages for Sterkfontein Member 2 Australopithecus and Member 5 Oldowan p.85

Isochron burial dating with cosmogenic nuclides 26Al and 10Be shows that the skeleton of the australopithecine individual known as ‘Little Foot’ is around 3.67 million years old, coeval with early Australopithecus from East Africa; a manuport dated to 2.18 million years ago from the Oldowan tool assemblage conforms with the oldest age previously suggested by fauna.

doi: 10.1038/nature14268