Table of Contents

Japanese Table of Contents

Volume 486 Number 7402 pp157-286

14 June 2012

About the cover

The cover illustration is inspired by the original painting ‘Our Self-Portrait: the Human Microbiome’ by scientific artist Joana Ricou ( The Human Microbiome Project (HMP), supported by the National Institutes of Health Common Fund, has the goal of characterizing the microbial communities that inhabit and interact with the human body in sickness and in health. In two Articles in this issue of Nature, the HMP Consortium presents the first population-scale details of the organismal and functional composition of the microbiota across five main body areas. An associated News & Views discusses these initial results — which, along with those of a series of co-publications, already constitute the most extensive catalogue of organisms and genes related to the human microbiome yet published — and highlights some of the major questions that the project will tackle in the next few years. (Cover graphics: Steven H. Lee/ Studio Graphiko.)

This Week



World View


Seven Days

  • Seven days: 8–14 June 2012

    The week in science: Funding for European Extremely Large Telescope; Budget cuts eat into Nobel prize; and ethical thumbs-up for altering embryos to prevent mitochondrial diseases.

News in Focus


  • Metallic hydrogen: Hard pressed

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    Two physicists say they have forced hydrogen to become an exotic metal thought to exist only in the hearts of giant planets. Now they must face their critics.

    • Ivan Amato
  • Neuroscience: The mind reader

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    Adrian Owen has found a way to use brain scans to communicate with people previously written off as unreachable. Now, he is fighting to take his methods to the clinic.

    • David Cyranoski


Books and Arts

  • Ecodesign: The bottom line

    If architecture is 'design for living', one of its greatest challenges is how to live with the masses of waste we excrete. Four pioneers in green sanitation design outline solutions to a dilemma too often shunted down the pan.

  • Q&A: Architect of change

    Urban campaigner and architect Arif Hasan has been central to a sanitary revolution, transforming Orangi, Karachi, from informal settlement to thriving community. Using his technical know-how, residents built a sewage system, sparking vast social change. Now chair of Pakistan's urbanization task force, he discusses incorporating sustainable design into poor cities.





  • Turning point: Jim Hoch

    Molecular biologist describes how he has held onto a grant for more than 30 years.

    • Virginia Gewin

naturejobs job listings and advertising features


  • Squealer

    Mouthpiece for a generation.

    • Robert Nathan Correll



  • Structure, function and diversity of the healthy human microbiome OPEN

    • The Human Microbiome Project Consortium

    The Human Microbiome Project Consortium reports the first results of their analysis of microbial communities from distinct, clinically relevant body habitats in a human cohort; the insights into the microbial communities of a healthy population lay foundations for future exploration of the epidemiology, ecology and translational applications of the human microbiome.

    See also
  • A framework for human microbiome research OPEN

    • The Human Microbiome Project Consortium

    The Human Microbiome Project Consortium has established a population-scale framework to study a variety of microbial communities that exist throughout the human body, enabling the generation of a range of quality-controlled data as well as community resources.

    See also
  • Human gut microbiome viewed across age and geography

    • Tanya Yatsunenko
    • Federico E. Rey
    • Mark J. Manary
    • Indi Trehan
    • Maria Gloria Dominguez-Bello
    • Monica Contreras
    • Magda Magris
    • Glida Hidalgo
    • Robert N. Baldassano
    • Andrey P. Anokhin
    • Andrew C. Heath
    • Barbara Warner
    • Jens Reeder
    • Justin Kuczynski
    • J. Gregory Caporaso
    • Catherine A. Lozupone
    • Christian Lauber
    • Jose Carlos Clemente
    • Dan Knights
    • Rob Knight
    • Jeffrey I. Gordon

    The human gut microbiome from a large cohort of more than 500 indivduals living on three continents with three distinct cultures is analysed, emphasizing the effect of host age, diet and environment on the composition and functional repertoire of fecal microbiota.


  • The intense starburst HDF 850.1 in a galaxy overdensity at z ≈ 5.2 in the Hubble Deep Field

    • Fabian Walter
    • Roberto Decarli
    • Chris Carilli
    • Frank Bertoldi
    • Pierre Cox
    • Elisabete Da Cunha
    • Emanuele Daddi
    • Mark Dickinson
    • Dennis Downes
    • David Elbaz
    • Richard Ellis
    • Jacqueline Hodge
    • Roberto Neri
    • Dominik A. Riechers
    • Axel Weiss
    • Eric Bell
    • Helmut Dannerbauer
    • Melanie Krips
    • Mark Krumholz
    • Lindley Lentati
    • Roberto Maiolino
    • Karl Menten
    • Hans-Walter Rix
    • Brant Robertson
    • Hyron Spinrad
    • Dan P. Stark
    • Daniel Stern

    Using a millimetre-wave molecular line scan, a redshift has finally been determined for the extremely active star-forming galaxy HDF850.1 in the Hubble Deep Field, which makes it younger than thought at 1.1 billion years after the Big Bang.

    See also
  • A signature of cosmic-ray increase in AD 774–775 from tree rings in Japan

    • Fusa Miyake
    • Kentaro Nagaya
    • Kimiaki Masuda
    • Toshio Nakamura

    A rapid increase in the 14C content of Japanese cedar tree rings occurred during ad 774 to 775, and is about 20 times larger than the change attributed to ordinary solar modulation; neither a solar flare nor a local supernova is likely to have been responsible.

  • Covert skill learning in a cortical-basal ganglia circuit

    • Jonathan D. Charlesworth
    • Timothy L. Warren
    • Michael S. Brainard

    In Bengalese finches, a basal ganglia circuit, the anterior forebrain pathway, can covertly acquire the ability to adaptively modify song without contributing to song production during practice or training.

  • Autistic-like behaviours and hyperactivity in mice lacking ProSAP1/Shank2

    • Michael J. Schmeisser
    • Elodie Ey
    • Stephanie Wegener
    • Juergen Bockmann
    • A. Vanessa Stempel
    • Angelika Kuebler
    • Anna-Lena Janssen
    • Patrick T. Udvardi
    • Ehab Shiban
    • Christina Spilker
    • Detlef Balschun
    • Boris V. Skryabin
    • Susanne tom Dieck
    • Karl-Heinz Smalla
    • Dirk Montag
    • Claire S. Leblond
    • Philippe Faure
    • Nicolas Torquet
    • Anne-Marie Le Sourd
    • Roberto Toro
    • Andreas M. Grabrucker
    • Sarah A. Shoichet
    • Dietmar Schmitz
    • Michael R. Kreutz
    • Thomas Bourgeron
    • Eckart D. Gundelfinger
    • Tobias M. Boeckers

    Altered glutamatergic neurotransmission can lead to the core symptoms of autism, and ProSAP1/Shank2 and ProSAP2/Shank3 proteins seem to serve different interrelated functions at excitatory synapses, especially in glutamate receptor targeting/assembly.

  • Autistic-like social behaviour in Shank2-mutant mice improved by restoring NMDA receptor function

    • Hyejung Won
    • Hye-Ryeon Lee
    • Heon Yung Gee
    • Won Mah
    • Jae-Ick Kim
    • Jiseok Lee
    • Seungmin Ha
    • Changuk Chung
    • Eun Suk Jung
    • Yi Sul Cho
    • Sae-Geun Park
    • Jung-Soo Lee
    • Kyungmin Lee
    • Daesoo Kim
    • Yong Chul Bae
    • Bong-Kiun Kaang
    • Min Goo Lee
    • Eunjoon Kim

    Mutations in SHANK2 have been associated with autism spectrum disorders in humans; here, Shank2 mutant mice are shown to exhibit autistic-like behaviours that can be improved by restoring decreased NMDA receptor function.

  • The deubiquitinase USP9X suppresses pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma

    • Pedro A. Pérez-Mancera
    • Alistair G. Rust
    • Louise van der Weyden
    • Glen Kristiansen
    • Allen Li
    • Aaron L. Sarver
    • Kevin A. T. Silverstein
    • Robert Grützmann
    • Daniela Aust
    • Petra Rümmele
    • Thomas Knösel
    • Colin Herd
    • Derek L. Stemple
    • Ross Kettleborough
    • Jacqueline A. Brosnan
    • Ang Li
    • Richard Morgan
    • Spencer Knight
    • Jun Yu
    • Shane Stegeman
    • Lara S. Collier
    • Jelle J. ten Hoeve
    • Jeroen de Ridder
    • Alison P. Klein
    • Michael Goggins
    • Ralph H. Hruban
    • David K. Chang
    • Andrew V. Biankin
    • Sean M. Grimmond
    • Australian Pancreatic Cancer Genome Initiative
    • Lodewyk F. A. Wessels
    • Stephen A. Wood
    • Christine A. Iacobuzio-Donahue
    • Christian Pilarsky
    • David A. Largaespada
    • David J. Adams
    • David A. Tuveson

    An in vivo transposon screen in a pancreatic cancer model identifies frequent inactivation of Usp9x; deletion of Usp9x cooperates with KrasG12D to accelerate rapidly pancreatic tumorigenesis in mice, validating their genetic interaction.

  • Atomic model of the type III secretion system needle

    • Antoine Loquet
    • Nikolaos G. Sgourakis
    • Rashmi Gupta
    • Karin Giller
    • Dietmar Riedel
    • Christian Goosmann
    • Christian Griesinger
    • Michael Kolbe
    • David Baker
    • Stefan Becker
    • Adam Lange

    The structure of the needle of the type III secretion system of Salmonella typhimurium, used to inject virulence proteins into host cells during infection, has been resolved by a combination of in vitro needle production, solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance, electron microscopy and Rosetta modelling at atomic resolution.