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Volume 611 Issue 7937, 24 November 2022

Pump, rest, leak, repeat

The cover illustration shows vacuolar-type adenosine triphosphatases (V-ATPases, large blue structures) on a synaptic vesicle from a nerve cell in the mammalian brain. V-ATPases pump protons across cellular membranes, and in neurons this process is essential for loading neurotransmitters into synaptic vesicles. In this week’s issue, Dimitrios Stamou and his colleagues shed light on V-ATPase dynamics in single native synaptic vesicles. By imaging proton-pumping at the single-molecule level, the researchers were able to see that V-ATPases do not pump continuously but instead switch between three distinct modes: proton-pumping, inactive and proton-leaking. The team suggests that this could indicate a broader biological role for ultraslow mode-switching in protein regulation.

Cover image: C. Kutzner, H. Grubmüller and R. Jahn/Max Planck Institute for Multidisciplinary Sciences; Jens Carstensen/University of Copenhagen

This Week

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  • News & Views

    • A clever application of perception-altering technology, enabled by genetic manipulations, provides insight into how fruit flies follow tendrils of airborne odour plumes to localize the source of smells.

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      • Karl Carlström
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    • The discovery of a gene that mediates periodic segmentation of the developing backbone of vertebrate embryos opened up research into how the pace of development is controlled by a molecular clock that has a species-specific rhythm.

      • Ryoichiro Kageyama
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      • Lea Marcotulli
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    • Bacteria are frequently present in human cancers. The use of state-of-the-art methods for tumour analysis that capture spatial information and single-cell molecular profiles paves the way to clarifying the roles of these microorganisms.

      • Ilana Livyatan
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  • Articles

    • Polarization measurements are reported for the blazar Mk501, revealing a degree of X-ray polarization that is more than twice the optical value and supporting the shock-accelerated energy-stratified electron population scenario.

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      Article Open Access
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      • Lixuan Zheng
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      • Xianhui Chen
    • DNA-mediated assembly of hollow nanoparticles can be used in an edge-bonding approach to design and synthesize nanoscale open-channel superlattices, with control of symmetry, geometry and topology.

      • Yuanwei Li
      • Wenjie Zhou
      • Chad A. Mirkin
    • A genetically encoded triplet photosensitizer is used to develop an efficient photoenzyme that can promote enantioselective intramolecular and bimolecular [2+2] cycloadditions by means of triplet energy transfer.

      • Jonathan S. Trimble
      • Rebecca Crawshaw
      • Anthony P. Green
    • Triplet photoenzymes developed through genetic encoding and directed evolution result in excited-state photocatalysts that provide a valuable approach to enantioselective photochemical synthesis.

      • Ningning Sun
      • Jianjian Huang
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      • Alexander B. Smith
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    • Specific deletion of group 2 innate lymphoid cells in mice shows these cells have roles in the recruitment of eosinophils and in mounting immune and epithelial type 2 responses.

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