Grass-feeding termite colony / Magdalena Calusinska

Biomass degrading enzymes of the Miscanthus-adapted termite microbiome

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    • , Brynne Raines
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    Through metagenomics and metatranscriptomics analyses, Calusinska et al. investigate the adaptation of the gut microbiome of the termite Cortaritermes sp. to a diet of Miscanthus grass. This work is a starting point for the identification of lignocellulose-degradation enzymes for potential biotechnology applications.

    • Magdalena Calusinska
    • , Martyna Marynowska
    • , Marie Bertucci
    • , Boris Untereiner
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    • Yasuhiro Hirano
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    • Jennifer W. Lou
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    Kimura et al. demonstrate that footpad hair formation of Drosophila involves elongation of hair cells and assembly of actin filaments, followed by cuticular deposition. They then use this mechanism to design an artificial highly adhesive device with easy attachment and detachment properties.

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    Bresser and Dijkgraaf et al. develop the ‘Tol’ strain, a genetically modified mouse model that expresses a range of shuffled reporter and modifier proteins from a single open reading frame. This strain is immunologically tolerant to these reporter and modifier proteins, providing a valuable model system for cell transfer studies and virus-mediated gene transfer studies.

    • Kaspar Bresser
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    Wang et al. find that the therapeutic agent cisplatin has opposite effect on acetylation of serine-arginine protein kinase 1 (SRPK1) in cisplatin-resistant versus – sensitive breast cancer cells. Inhibiting SRPK1 activity or enhancing its acetylation re-sensitises cells to cisplatin, suggesting a potential strategy to treat cancers resistant to platinum-based therapy.

    • Cheng Wang
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Collection

Stress

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Stress

Stress affects all forms of life and can often feel like a common presence for us. For this month's collection our editors have selected articles from Communications Biology that describe how life — from the cellular to the population level — reacts and adapts to stressors of different forms and in diverse systems.

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