Reviews & Analysis

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  • Generating human stem cells from a single cell recovered during preimplantation genetic diagnosis does not, in principle, harm the embryo. Can the approach be used in assisted reproductive technology programmes?

    • Joe Leigh Simpson
    News & Views
  • Silicon is the archetypal semiconductor, and base material of the microelectronic age. But it turns out that, treated the right way, silicon the semiconductor can become silicon the superconductor.

    • Robert J. Cava
    News & Views
  • Molecules in solution change their conformations so quickly that no method has been able to record the process. This looks set to change, as infrared spectroscopy rises to the challenge.

    • Minhaeng Cho
    News & Views
  • The first map of copy-number variation in the human genome has been created. It is now feasible to examine the role of such genome variation in disease and to explore in depth the extent of 'normal' variability.

    • Kevin V. Shianna
    • Huntington F. Willard
    News & Views
  • Accumulation of organized, self-polymerizing protein aggregates is a hallmark of Alzheimer's disease and infectious prion diseases. The similarities between these conditions may be even closer than that.

    • Roland Riek
    News & Views
  • In most bacteria, a molecule known as trigger factor prevents misfolding of newly made proteins emerging from their ribosome factory. The dynamic action of this molecule has been followed using fluorescence spectroscopy.

    • Ada Yonath
    News & Views
  • A compound found in red grapes called resveratrol improves the health and lifespan of mice on a high-calorie diet. This is potentially good news for overweight humans. Does it bode well for the rest of us too?

    • Matt Kaeberlein
    • Peter S. Rabinovitch
    News & Views
  • What causes gas to be drawn in towards black holes, rather than remain in a stable orbit as planets do around the Sun? A laboratory result indicates that something more than just hydrodynamics must be at work.

    • Steven A. Balbus
    News & Views
  • Levels of dissolved organic carbon in British streams and lakes have risen over the past two decades. It might be a downstream effect of decreased acid rain — but isolating single factors is notoriously difficult.

    • Nigel Roulet
    • Tim R. Moore
    News & Views
  • The reality of a complete Neanderthal genome draws near, as two papers report the sequencing of large amounts of Neanderthal DNA. The results will help to answer some central questions on human evolution.

    • David M. Lambert
    • Craig D. Millar
    News & Views
  • Molecules often work together in complexes to carry out their functions in the cell. But how do they get together in such a dynamic environment? A structural study follows proteins as they meet their partners.

    • Tom L. Blundell
    • Juan Fernández-Recio
    News & Views
  • The latest research seems to imply that all earthquakes are born equal. But combining that insight with earlier, seemingly contradictory, work could help us to tell which tremors grow to become more equal than others.

    • James F. Dolan
    News & Views