Reviews & Analysis

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  • Unusual lattice vibrations have been discovered in scandium trifluoride — a simple compound that shrinks when heated. This finding may help to explain the phenomenon of negative thermal expansion.

    • J. Paul Attfield
    News & Views
  • Mutations in the maternal copy of the UBE3A gene cause a neurodevelopmental disorder known as Angelman syndrome. Drugs that activate the normally silenced paternal copy of this gene may be of therapeutic value. See Letter p.185

    • Arthur L. Beaudet
    News & Views
  • In mammals, molecular clocks regulate transcription and glucose homeostasis. One way they do so is by controlling glucocorticoid-receptor signalling, which suggests that clocks are embedded in liver metabolism. See Letter p.552

    • Joseph Bass
    News & Views
  • A planetary system has been found in a startlingly tight orbit around an evolved star. The finding challenges the idea that close-in planets are destroyed as their host star evolves. See Letter p.496

    • Eliza M. R. Kempton
    News & Views
  • Adapted extracts from selected News & Views articles published this year.

    News & Views
  • The major threats to amphibian species include pandemic disease and changes in climate and in land use. A study of the global distributions of these threats predicts that they will affect most amphibians by 2080. See Letter p.516

    • Ross A. Alford
    News & Views
  • A technique for cooling ultracold atoms in optical lattices has been demonstrated. This advance should allow the physics of strongly correlated systems, including that of quantum magnetism, to be explored. See Letter p.500

    • Gretchen K. Campbell
    News & Views
  • Recent advances in amide-bond-forming reactions are reviewed and summarized, highlighting the successful implementation of new synthetic methodologies and the limitations that need to be overcome to efficiently make the next generation of conventional small-molecule pharmaceuticals, therapeutic peptides, and natural and non-natural proteins.

    • Vijaya R. Pattabiraman
    • Jeffrey W. Bode
    Review Article
  • The structure of an antibody that potently neutralizes a wide range of HIV-1 strains, together with a minimal antigen mimic, is an advance towards the design of vaccines that may elicit protective responses. See Article p.336

    • Quentin J. Sattentau
    News & Views
  • Most soft materials, such as sand, can be in either a solid-like or a liquid-like state. New experiments probe the surprisingly rich nonlinear physics that can occur in between these two states. See Letter p.355

    • Vincenzo Vitelli
    • Martin van Hecke
    News & Views
  • A long-standing issue in nanotechnology is how to connect molecular electronic devices. A method for splicing nanoscale wires made from different materials paves the way for a solution to this problem.

    • Dario M. Bassani
    News & Views
  • Stellar explosions known as type Ia supernovae are a significant tool in cosmology, but their exact nature is unknown. Two studies bring an understanding of these cosmic blasts a step closer. See Letters p.344 & p.348

    • Mario Hamuy
    News & Views
  • The efficacy of the anticancer drug vemurafenib, which is used to treat metastatic melanoma, is plagued by acquired resistance. A picture of how such resistance develops is emerging. See Letter p.387

    • Hugo Lavoie
    • Marc Therrien
    News & Views
  • Compounds containing the trifluoromethyl group have many uses, but their isomers must often be made using different multi-step routes. Two studies now show how several isomers can be made by the same route. See Letter p.224

    • Andrew T. Parsons
    • Stephen L. Buchwald
    News & Views
  • The molecular clock machinery regulates organisms' responses to daily variations in the environment. One unexpected response seems to be temporal fine-tuning of stem-cell behaviour in the skin. See Article p.209

    • Lorena Aguilar-Arnal
    • Paolo Sassone-Corsi
    News & Views