Volume 430 Issue 6996, 8 July 2004


  • Editorial |

    The triumph of the spacecraft's arrival in orbit around Saturn last week heralds four years of outstanding research. But the longer-term ambitions of NASA and planetary researchers signal trouble ahead.

  • Editorial |

    How to access all of Nature publications' journalism in one fell swoop.


News in Brief


  • News Feature |

    Progress is being made in the fight against HIV, but rich countries have yet to meet all of their pledges to tackle the AIDS pandemic.

    • Peter Aldhous
  • News Feature |

    Can African nations produce their own affordable AIDS drugs? Yes, says the woman behind Thailand's successful HIV treatment programme. Julie Clayton talks to a driven individual who won't take no for an answer.

    • Julie Clayton

news feature

  • News Feature |

    In sub-Saharan Africa, there's an urgent need for creams or gels that can protect women from infection with HIV. Now the first large-scale trials are getting under way. Helen Pilcher reports.

    • Helen Pilcher



  • Commentary |

    Can athletes be held responsible for every substance they take?

    • John W. Honour

Books and Arts

News & Views

  • News & Views |

    The discovery of massive, evolved galaxies at much greater distances than expected — and hence at earlier times in the history of the Universe — is a challenge to our understanding of how galaxies form.

    • Gregory D. Wirth
  • News & Views |

    Signals through Notch receptors regulate many developmental decisions. New evidence suggests that this pathway is also involved in dictating the tone of the immune response to infection.

    • Sophie M. Lehar
    •  & Michael J. Bevan
  • News & Views |

    Flow in the Earth's mantle buffets ascending mantle plumes, causing surface ‘hotspots’ to move relative to each other. A chain of deduction offers solutions to an age-old puzzle about hotspot behaviour.

    • Norman H. Sleep
  • News & Views |

    The opening and closing — gating — of ion channels in response to specific stimuli is crucial for cell function. The membrane-partitioning activities of two venom toxins give insights into the mechanisms involved.

    • Maria L. Garcia
  • News & Views |

    Transition metals form mixed-valence oxides that are expected to have ordered arrangements of d-shell electrons. But the ionic picture must be rethought to include oxygen ‘holes’ in the charge-ordered patterns.

    • Michael Coey
  • News & Views |

    In studies of the evolution of the adaptive immune system, the lamprey has been an unlikely centre of attention. These studies now provide evidence of a fascinating variation on how such a system can operate.

    • Martin F. Flajnik

Research Highlights


  • News and Views Feature |

    The term RNAi — short for RNA interference — crops up again and again in biology research these days. This is in part because of its power as a laboratory tool, and in part because it is a widespread natural phenomenon.

    • Carl D. Novina
    •  & Phillip A. Sharp

Brief Communications

  • Brief Communication |

    The changing boundaries of a stream flowing at a constant rate are explained.

    • Keith Mertens
    • , Vakhtang Putkaradze
    •  & Peter Vorobieff
  • Brief Communications Arising

  • Brief Communications Arising |

    • M. Tschöp
    • , T. R. Castañeda
    • , H. G. Joost
    • , C. Thöne-Reineke
    • , S. Ortmann
    • , S. Klaus
    • , M. M. Hagan
    • , P. C. Chandler
    • , K. D. Oswald
    • , S. C. Benoit
    • , R. J. Seeley
    • , K. P. Kinzig
    • , T. H. Moran
    • , A. G. Beck-Sickinger
    • , N. Koglin
    • , R. J. Rodgers
    • , J. E. Blundell
    • , Y. Ishii
    • , A. H. Beattie
    • , P. Holch
    • , D. B. Allison
    • , K. Raun
    • , K. Madsen
    • , B. S. Wulff
    • , C. E. Stidsen
    • , M. Birringer
    • , O. J. Kreuzer
    • , M. Schindler
    • , K. Arndt
    • , K. Rudolf
    • , M. Mark
    • , X. Y. Deng
    • , D. C. Withcomb
    • , H. Halem
    • , J. Taylor
    • , J. Dong
    • , R. Datta
    • , M. Culler
    • , S. Craney
    • , D. Flora
    • , D. Smiley
    •  & M. L. Heiman






  • Insight |

    Infection and Immunity

    Infectious diseases remain a serious medical burden in both developing and industrialized countries. The emergence of new diseases such as HIV/AIDS and severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), the resurgence of known diseases such as West Nile disease and multidrugresistant tuberculosis, and the threat of deliberately developed man-made infections are cause for concern. When vaccines or effective treatments are not available, we rely on the immune system to clear the host of infectious agents and disease. A better understanding of the tactics used by pathogens and of the immune system's defensive armoury is needed to pave the way for improved strategies of prevention and therapy. The four articles in this Insight provide a snapshot of the issue, addressing in turn the nature and spread of emerging and re-emerging infectious diseases, the assault strategies used by major pathogens, the immediate innate immune response, and the antigen-specific acquired (or adaptive) immune response, which is the host's second line of defence.

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