Lessons from the Ancient One p.7

The final stages of a dispute over an ancient Native American skeleton signal the need for clearer oversight of such human remains.

doi: 10.1038/533007a

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The nuclear option p.7

China is vigorously promoting nuclear energy, but its pursuit of reprocessing is misguided.

doi: 10.1038/533007b

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Fat lot of good p.8

Humans' exceptional ability to burn through calories fuels our evolution.

doi: 10.1038/533008a

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Human embryos grown in lab for longer than ever before p.15

Embryos cultured for up to 13 days after fertilization open a window into early development.

doi: 10.1038/533015a

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Australia softens blow of climate job cuts p.16

New research centre at national science agency CSIRO adds 40 jobs, amid hundreds of redundancies.

doi: 10.1038/nature.2016.19831

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Software error doomed Japanese Hitomi spacecraft p.18

Space agency declares the astronomy satellite a loss.

doi: 10.1038/nature.2016.19835

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US and China eye up European gravitational-wave mission p.19

Space-based detector draws interest, but regulatory hurdles might complicate a partnership.

doi: 10.1038/533019a

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Stem-cell plan aims to bring rhino back from brink of extinction p.20

Ambitious effort depends on transformation of rhino tissue into sperm and egg cells.

doi: 10.1038/533020a

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News Features


Can artificial intelligence create the next wonder material? p.22


doi: 10.1038/533022a

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Nine years of censorship p.26


doi: 10.1038/533026a

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News & Views


Materials science: Clockwork at the atomic scale p.38


doi: 10.1038/nature17890

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Bioengineering: Evolved to overcome Bt-toxin resistance p.39


doi: 10.1038/nature17893

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Parkinson's disease: Guilt by genetic association p.40


doi: 10.1038/nature17891

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Immunology: Mum's microbes boost baby's immunity p.42


doi: 10.1038/nature17895

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Cell biology: Ubiquitination without E1 and E2 enzymes p.43

病原性細菌のLegionella pneumophilaのタンパク質の1つは、タンパク質修飾分子であるユビキチンをヒトのタンパク質に結合させることが分かった。意外なことに、結合には細胞のE1およびE2酵素が関わっていないことが分かった。

doi: 10.1038/nature17888

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Nuclear physics: Elusive transition spotted in thorium p.44


doi: 10.1038/533044a

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Direct detection of the 229Th nuclear clock transition p.47

Direct detection of the 229Th nuclear clock transition has been achieved, placing direct constraints on transition energy and half-life; these results are a step towards a nuclear clock, nuclear quantum optics and a nuclear laser.

doi: 10.1038/nature17669

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Principles underlying sensory map topography in primary visual cortex p.52

Recordings from cat visual cortex show that the cortical maps for stimulus orientation, direction and retinal disparity depend on an organization in which thalamic axons with similar retinotopy and light/dark responses are clustered together in the cortex.

doi: 10.1038/nature17936

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生物工学:Bacillus thuringiensisの毒素の連続的進化で昆虫の耐性に打ち勝つ

Continuous evolution of Bacillus thuringiensis toxins overcomes insect resistance p.58

Phage-assisted continuous evolution (PACE) rapidly evolves Bacillus thuringiensis toxins through more than 500 generations of mutation, selection, and replication to bind a receptor expressed on the surface of insect-pest midgut cells.

doi: 10.1038/nature17938

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Resolved atomic lines reveal outflows in two ultraluminous X-ray sources p.64

Ultraluminous X-ray sources are thought to be powered by accretion onto a compact object; now the discovery of X-ray emission lines and blueshifted absorption lines in the high-resolution spectra of ultraluminous X-ray sources NGC 1313 X-1 and NGC 5408 X-1 shows that in each case the compact object is surrounded by powerful winds with an outflow velocity of about 0.2 times that of light.

doi: 10.1038/nature17417

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Polar metals by geometric design p.68

Ab initio calculations are used to identify the structural conditions under which a polar state in metals might be stabilized; this information is used to guide the experimental realization of new room-temperature polar metals.

doi: 10.1038/nature17628

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Machine-learning-assisted materials discovery using failed experiments p.73

Failed chemical reactions are rarely reported, even though they could still provide information about the bounds on the reaction conditions needed for product formation; here data from such reactions are used to train a machine-learning algorithm, which is subsequently able to predict reaction outcomes with greater accuracy than human intuition.

doi: 10.1038/nature17439

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Scalable and sustainable electrochemical allylic C–H oxidation p.77

An electrochemical C–H oxidation strategy that exhibits broad substrate scope, operational simplicity and high chemoselectivity is described; it uses inexpensive and readily available materials and represents a scalable allylic C–H oxidation that could be adopted in large-scale industrial settings without substantial environmental impact.

doi: 10.1038/nature17431

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Chondritic xenon in the Earth’s mantle p.82

High-precision analysis of magmatic gas from the Eifel volcanic area in Germany suggests that the light xenon isotopes reflect a chondritic primordial component that differs from the precursor of atmospheric xenon, consistent with an asteroidal origin for the volatile elements in the Earth’s mantle.

doi: 10.1038/nature17434

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The genetic program for cartilage development has deep homology within Bilateria p.86

Vertebrate and invertebrate cartilage share structural and biochemical properties, and their development is controlled by a highly conserved genetic circuit, suggesting that a deeply homologous mechanism underlies the parallel evolution of cartilage in Bilateria.

doi: 10.1038/nature17398

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Topology of ON and OFF inputs in visual cortex enables an invariant columnar architecture p.90

Two-photon imaging of calcium signals in the tree shrew visual cortex shows that light-responsive and dark-responsive inputs have distinct arrangements that allow the cortex to map the orientation, visual location and spatial phase of visual stimuli.

doi: 10.1038/nature17941

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Parkinson-associated risk variant in distal enhancer of α-synuclein modulates target gene expression p.95

Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have identified numerous genetic variants associated with complex diseases, but mechanistic insights are impeded by a lack of understanding of how specific risk variants functionally contribute to the underlying pathogenesis. It has been proposed that cis-acting effects of non-coding risk variants on gene expression are a major factor for phenotypic variation of complex traits and disease susceptibility. Recent genome-scale epigenetic studies have highlighted the enrichment of GWAS-identified variants in regulatory DNA elements of disease-relevant cell types. Furthermore, single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP)-specific changes in transcription factor binding are correlated with heritable alterations in chromatin state and considered a major mediator of sequence-dependent regulation of gene expression. Here we describe a novel strategy to functionally dissect the cis-acting effect of genetic risk variants in regulatory elements on gene expression by combining genome-wide epigenetic information with clustered regularly-interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR)/Cas9 genome editing in human pluripotent stem cells. By generating a genetically precisely controlled experimental system, we identify a common Parkinson’s disease associated risk variant in a non-coding distal enhancer element that regulates the expression of α-synuclein (SNCA), a key gene implicated in the pathogenesis of Parkinson’s disease. Our data suggest that the transcriptional deregulation of SNCA is associated with sequence-dependent binding of the brain-specific transcription factors EMX2 and NKX6-1. This work establishes an experimental paradigm to functionally connect genetic variation with disease-relevant phenotypes.

doi: 10.1038/nature17939

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Unique human immune signature of Ebola virus disease in Guinea p.100

Fatal Ebola virus disease is characterized by a high proportion of CD4+ and CD8+ T cells expressing the inhibitory molecules CTLA-4 and PD-1, correlating with high virus load; individuals who survive the infection exhibit lower expression of these inhibitory molecules and generate Ebola-specific CD8+ T cells, suggesting that dysregulation of the T cell response is a key component of Ebola virus disease pathophysiology.

doi: 10.1038/nature17949

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A single injection of anti-HIV-1 antibodies protects against repeated SHIV challenges p.105

A single injection of four anti-HIV-1-neutralizing monoclonal antibodies blocks repeated weekly low-dose virus challenges of simian/human immunodeficiency virus.

doi: 10.1038/nature17677

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EBI2 augments Tfh cell fate by promoting interaction with IL-2-quenching dendritic cells p.110

The differentiation of T follicular helper cells requires the G-protein-coupled receptor Ebi2 as well as the interaction with CD25-producing dendritic cells that quench T-cell-derived interleukin-2.

doi: 10.1038/nature17947

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Noncanonical autophagy inhibits the autoinflammatory, lupus-like response to dying cells p.115

Defects in LC3-associated phagocytosis in mice are shown to result in systemic lupus erythematosus-like disease; dying cells are engulfed but not degraded in LAP-deficient mice, resulting in increased serum levels of autoantibodies and inflammatory cytokines, and evidence of kidney disease.

doi: 10.1038/nature17950

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Ubiquitination independent of E1 and E2 enzymes by bacterial effectors p.120

An unprecedented mechanism of ubiquitination that is independent of E1 and E2 enzymes, instead relying on activation of ubiquitin by ADP-ribosylation, and which is mediated by members of the SidE effector family encoded by the bacterial pathogen Legionella pneumophila, establishes that ubiquitination can be carried out by a single enzyme.

doi: 10.1038/nature17657

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Efficient introduction of specific homozygous and heterozygous mutations using CRISPR/Cas9 p.125

A CRISPR/Cas9 genome editing framework has been developed that allows controlled introduction of mono- and bi-allelic sequence changes, and is used to generate induced human pluripotent stem cells with heterozygous and homozygous dominant mutations in amyloid precursor protein and presenilin 1 that have been associated with early onset Alzheimer’s disease.

doi: 10.1038/nature17664

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