Volume 511 Number 7507



STAP retracted p.5

Two retractions highlight long-standing issues of trust and sloppiness that must be addressed.

doi: 10.1038/511005b


Academic freedom under threat p.5

The human rights of academics in Egypt are being eroded by the military regime that has taken control of the country. The Arab Spring is on hold.

doi: 10.1038/511005a


Science and war p.6

As the centenary of its outbreak approaches, Nature looks back on the First World War.

doi: 10.1038/511006a



Risks of flu work underrated p.13

US funding agency disagreed with university's assessment of potential threats.

doi: 10.1038/511013a


Australian budget hits science jobs p.14

Research-agency staff protest over slashed spending and concerns about country's future research capability.

doi: 10.1038/511014a


GM maize splits Mexico p.16

Legal challenge to transgenic crops has created a rift in the country's scientific community.

doi: 10.1038/511016a


Electroceuticals spark interest p.18

Industry and academia invest in treating diseases by delivering electrical charges to nerves.

doi: 10.1038/511018a

News Features


Stem cells: Hope on the line p.19


doi: 10.1038/511019a


Astronomy: Planets in chaos p.22


doi: 10.1038/511022a

News & Views


Evolutionary developmental biology: Use it or lose it p.34


doi: 10.1038/nature13509


Astrophysics: A tight duo in a trio of black holes p.35


doi: 10.1038/nature13511


Structural biology: Lipopolysaccharide rolls out the barrel p.37


doi: 10.1038/nature13508


Climate science: Expulsion from history p.38


doi: 10.1038/511038a


Immunology: Fixing the odds against tuberculosis p.39


doi: 10.1038/nature13512



Patterning and post-patterning modes of evolutionary digit loss in mammals p.41

A study of limb development in multiple mammals reveals that evolutionary digit loss has occured in many different ways—at different stages and by different mechanisms, such as regulation of Shh in initial digit specification events or by removal of digits through cell death.

doi: 10.1038/nature13496


Attenuated sensing of SHH by Ptch1 underlies evolution of bovine limbs p.46

The basic five-digit limb of tetrapods has been altered many times during evolution, usually by the progressive loss of digits — this study tracks the molecular underpinnings of this change, showing that in comparison to mouse, the polarized gene expression in the bovine limb bud is progressively lost due to evolutionary alteration of the cis-regulatory sequences that control Ptch1 expression in response to SHH signalling in the digit-forming handplate.

doi: 10.1038/nature13289


Structural basis for outer membrane lipopolysaccharide insertion p.52

Lipopolysaccharide, an essential component of the outer membranes of Gram-negative bacteria, is inserted by LptD–LptE, a protein complex with a unique ‘barrel and plug’ architecture; the structure, molecular dynamics simulations and functional assays of the LptD–LptE complex of Salmonella typhimurium suggest that lipopolysaccharide may pass through the barrel and is then inserted into the outer leaflet of the outer membrane through a lateral opening between two β-strands of LptD.

doi: 10.1038/nature13464



A close-pair binary in a distant triple supermassive black hole system p.57

A triple supermassive black hole system has been found that shows helical modulation of the large-scale radio jets; this modulation is caused by two of the black holes being tightly coupled as a binary system.

doi: 10.1038/nature13454


Normal-state nodal electronic structure in underdoped high-Tc copper oxides p.61

Quantum oscillation measurements in the underdoped copper oxide YBa2Cu3O6 + x reveal a nodal electronic structure from charge order, which helps to characterize the normal state out of which superconductivity emerges in the underdoped regime.

doi: 10.1038/nature13326


Giant nonlinear response from plasmonic metasurfaces coupled to intersubband transitions p.65

Multiple-quantum-well semiconductors can provide one of the largest known nonlinear material responses, which is, however, geometrically limited to light beams polarized perpendicular to the semiconductor layers; by coupling a plasmonic metasurface to the semiconductor heterostructure, this limitation can be lifted, opening a new path towards ultrathin planarized components with large nonlinear response.

doi: 10.1038/nature13455


Quantum control and process tomography of a semiconductor quantum dot hybrid qubit p.70

A simply prepared quantum bit that is a hybrid of spin and charge enables full control on the Bloch sphere with π-rotation times of less than 100 picoseconds in two orthogonal directions; the speed arises from the charge-like characteristics, and the spin-like features result in increased quantum coherence.

doi: 10.1038/nature13407


Abrupt pre-Bølling–Allerød warming and circulation changes in the deep ocean p.75

Analysis of radiocarbon and uranium-series dates and clumped isotope temperature estimates from water column profiles of fossil deep-sea corals in the North Atlantic shows that the release of heat from warm waters in the deep North Atlantic Ocean probably triggered the Bølling–Allerød warming and reinvigoration of the Atlantic meridional overturning circulation 14,700 years ago.

doi: 10.1038/nature13472


New specimen of Archaeopteryx provides insights into the evolution of pennaceous feathers p.79

A new specimen of Archaeopteryx with extensive pennaceous feather preservation.

doi: 10.1038/nature13467


Genomic divergence in a ring species complex p.83

Two species may be fully reproductively isolated at the point they meet, but be connected by continuous gene flow by a longer route around the back of a geographical barrier; such a ring species complex exists for the greenish warbler, and genomics shows that there have been several historical breaks in gene flow along the continuum, as well as some introgression between the end forms.

doi: 10.1038/nature13285


RLIM is dispensable for X-chromosome inactivation in the mouse embryonic epiblast p.86

The ubiquitin ligase RLIM is known to activate the long non-coding RNA Xist, which is crucial for X-chromosome inactivation in female mice; however, unlike imprinted X-chromosome inactivation that requires RLIM for Xist expression, evidence is now provided that during random X-chromosome inactivation Xist expression is regulated by an RLIM-independent pathway in vivo.

doi: 10.1038/nature13286


The sonic hedgehog factor GLI1 imparts drug resistance through inducible glucuronidation p.90

A new mechanism by which acute myeloid leukaemia patients become resistant to Ara-C and a newer treatment, ribavirin, is uncovered; these drugs can be glucuronidated and thereby inactivated by members of the UDP glucuronosyltransferase family of enzymes activated through GLI1 signalling.

doi: 10.1038/nature13283


Anti-diabetic activity of insulin-degrading enzyme inhibitors mediated by multiple hormones p.94

The discovery of a selective, physiologically active inhibitor of insulin-degrading enzyme (IDE) illuminates the therapeutic potential of IDE inhibitors for the treatment of diabetes and reveals that IDE regulates in vivo glucagon and amylin, in addition to insulin.

doi: 10.1038/nature13297


Host-directed therapy of tuberculosis based on interleukin-1 and type I interferon crosstalk p.99

Active tuberculosis has been linked to excessive type I interferon induction whereas interleukin-1 may have protective effects; here it is shown that interleukin-1 enhances the production of prostaglandin E2, which helps contain the pathogen while also suppressing detrimental type I interferon.

doi: 10.1038/nature13489


Analysis of orthologous groups reveals archease and DDX1 as tRNA splicing factors p.104

Using a phylogenetic approach, the protein archease is identified as being a subunit of the human transfer RNA splicing ligase, and found to be necessary for full ligase activity, in cooperation with DDX1.

doi: 10.1038/nature13284


Structural basis for lipopolysaccharide insertion in the bacterial outer membrane p.108

Lipopolysaccharide, an essential component of the Gram-negative bacteria outer membrane, is inserted by LptD–LptE, a protein complex with a unique ‘barrel and plug’ architecture; the structure of the LptD–LptE complex of Shigella flexneri determined here shows LptD forming a 26-stranded β-barrel with LptE located inside the barrel of LptD, the first two β-strands are distorted by two proline residues, creating a potential portal in the barrel wall that might allow lateral diffusion of lipopolysaccharide into the outer membrane.

doi: 10.1038/nature13484

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