Reviews & Analysis

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  • The physicochemical properties of cationic helical polypeptides can be optimized to induce endoplasmic reticulum stress in antigen-presenting cells so as to elicit antitumour innate immune responses.

    • Michelle Z. Dion
    • Natalie Artzi
    News & Views
  • By coating manganese dioxide on the surface of fixed bacteria, we obtained mineralized bacteria with the ability to potently activate multiple immune signalling pathways. Immunotherapy with mineralized bacteria suppressed various types of cancer in multiple animal models, eliciting both immune memory and abscopal antitumour effects.

    Research Briefing
  • CRISPR–Cas12a was used to directly replace mouse antibody variable chain genes with human versions in primary B cells. The edited cells underwent affinity maturation in vivo, improving the potency of HIV-1 and SARS-CoV-2 neutralizing antibodies without loss of bioavailability. Affinity maturation of edited cells also enables new vaccine models and adaptive B cell therapies.

    Research Briefing
  • Naturally perceived thermal sensations can be evoked as though originating from a prosthetic limb by taking advantage of sensory reinnervation of the residual limb after amputation.

    • Max Ortiz-Catalan
    News & Views
  • Genetic and cellular drivers of the cellular uptake of SARS-CoV-2 can be screened at high throughput via droplet microfluidics and size-exclusion methods for the analysis of the formation of fusions between cells expressing the virus’s spike protein and cells expressing the protein’s receptor.

    • Alexis Autour
    • Christoph A. Merten
    News & Views
  • Photoacoustic tomography can image fast haemodynamics by either exploiting the spatial heterogeneity of blood or by leveraging a single laser pulse and a single element functioning as thousands of virtual detectors.

    • Rongkang Gao
    • Zhiqiang Xu
    • Chengbo Liu
    News & Views
  • Humanized versions of antibodies with enhanced stability can be designed via the systematic energy-based ranking of computationally grafted non-human complementarity-determining regions onto thousands of human frameworks.

    • Alissa M. Hummer
    • Charlotte M. Deane
    News & Views
  • The discovery of antibodies that bind with high affinity to clinically relevant antigens can be sped up by leveraging next-generation sequencing to screen hundreds of millions of antibody–antigen interactions.

    • Timothy A. Whitehead
    News & Views
  • Cellular encapsulation holds promise for immunosuppression-free pancreatic islet transplantation. However, long-term graft survival remains a challenge, especially at the subcutaneous site. We harnessed temporary, controlled, inflammation-induced neovascularization to create a modified subcutaneous cavity that supports long-term survival and function of a customized islet encapsulation device without immunosuppression.

    Research Briefing
  • Sensing changes in ionic current as barcoded DNA translocates through solid-state nanopores allows the study of how nucleotide sequences alter the DNA-binding specificity of the catalytically inactive Cas9 ribonucleoprotein complex.

    • Weihua Guan
    News & Views
  • The on-target off-tumour toxicities of T-cell-engaging bispecific antibodies in patients can be captured in intestinal organoids derived from the patients’ biopsied tissue and supplemented with immune cells.

    • Marta Buzzetti
    • Marco Gerlinger
    News & Views
  • Many genetic therapies are limited by a lack of methods for delivering them to target cells in the body. We have developed technologies to engineer biological nanovesicles to load therapeutic proteins, target recipient immune cells and deliver Cas9 to knock out CXCR4 in primary human T cells.

    Research Briefing
  • We compared a range of linear and nonlinear models based on how accurately they could describe resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging and intracranial electroencephalography dynamics in humans. Linear autoregressive models were the most accurate in all cases. Using numerical simulations, we demonstrated that spatiotemporal averaging has a critical and robust role in this linearity.

    Research Briefing
  • An intravenous needle that undergoes a temperature-responsive shape change by softening on insertion into the body may induce less trauma than commercial devices for intravenous access.

    • Eoin D. O’Cearbhaill
    News & Views
  • Base editors can restore the expression of survival motor neuron protein to therapeutically beneficial levels in animal and cell models of spinal muscular atrophy.

    • Andrew Portell
    • Prashant Mali
    News & Views
  • Barcoding cells with microparticles that emit near-infrared laser light enables the use of flow cytometry to track the dynamics of single cells by using more markers and fewer colours.

    • Enrico Lugli
    • Mario Roederer
    • Rosa Sottile
    News & Views
  • Leveraging the expertise of physicians to identify medically meaningful features in ‘counterfactual’ images produced via generative machine learning facilitates the auditing of the inference process of medical-image classifiers, as shown for dermatology images.

    • Oran Lang
    • Ilana Traynis
    • Yun Liu
    News & Views
  • DNA-based molecular computation allows for the simultaneous detection of multiple types of biomarker, as shown for the accurate identification of prostate cancer in serum samples on the basis of specific RNAs, proteins and small molecules.

    • Lu Yu
    • Hao Yan
    News & Views
  • We show that nonlinear latent factors and structures in neural population activity can be modelled in a manner that allows for flexible dynamical inference, causally, non-causally and in the presence of missing neural observations. Further, the developed neural network model improves the prediction of neural activity, behaviour and latent neural structures.

    Research Briefing