Articles in 2021

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  • The Clostridium difficile virulence factors TcdA and TcdB contain a glucosyltransferase domain (GTD), which has both glucohydrolase (GH) and glucosyltransferase (GT) activities. Here, the authors characterize the transition state features of the TcdA and TcdB GH reactions by measuring kinetic isotope effects and they identify two transition state analogues, isofagomine and noeuromycin that inhibit TcdA and TcdB. They also present the crystal structures of TcdB-GTD bound to these inhibitors and the reaction product UDP.

    • Ashleigh S. Paparella
    • Briana L. Aboulache
    • Vern L. Schramm
    ArticleOpen Access
  • Layered boron compounds attract enormous interest in applications. This work reports first-principles calculations coupled with global optimization to show that the outer boron surface in MgB2 nanosheets undergo disordering and clustering, which is experimentally confirmed in synthesized MgB2 nanosheets.

    • Sichi Li
    • Harini Gunda
    • Brandon C. Wood
    ArticleOpen Access
  • The molecular circuitry that drives dendrite formation during osteocytogenesis remains poorly understood. Here the authors show that deletion of Sp7, a gene linked to rare and common skeletal disease, in mature osteoblasts and osteocytes causes severe defects in osteocyte dendrites.

    • Jialiang S. Wang
    • Tushar Kamath
    • Marc N. Wein
    ArticleOpen Access
  • Aptamers could potentially be widely used in therapy and diagnostics. Here the authors use standardised assay conditions to compare aptamer properties in tumour targeting.

    • Linsley Kelly
    • Keith E. Maier
    • Matthew Levy
    ArticleOpen Access
  • The role of the post-translational modifications in tissue regeneration is still not clearly understood. Here, the authors show that many nuclear proteins change S-nitrosylation state in the regenerating zebrafish tailfin, highlighting the importance of Kdm1a S-nitrosylation in the repair process.

    • Gianfranco Matrone
    • Sung Yun Jung
    • John P. Cooke
    ArticleOpen Access
  • The state of Victoria, Australia experienced a substantial second wave of COVID-19 but brought it under control with strict non-pharmaceutical interventions. Here, the authors model the second wave in Victoria to estimate the impacts of the different interventions.

    • James M. Trauer
    • Michael J. Lydeamore
    • Romain Ragonnet
    ArticleOpen Access
  • Living cells can harvest environmental energy to drive chemical processes. Here the authors design a minimal artificial system that achieves steady states at similar metabolic densities to microorganisms.

    • Andrea Testa
    • Mirco Dindo
    • Paola Laurino
    ArticleOpen Access
  • Segmentation and classification of microstructures are required by quality control and materials development. The authors apply deep learning for the segmentation of complex phase steel microstructures, providing a bridge between experimental and computational methods for materials analysis.

    • Ali Riza Durmaz
    • Martin Müller
    • Peter Gumbsch
    ArticleOpen Access
  • The calcium binding protein S100B is an abundantly expressed protein in the brain and has neuro-protective functions by inhibiting Aβ aggregation and metal ion toxicity. Here, the authors combine cell biology and biochemical experiments with chemical kinetics and NMR measurements and show that S100B protein is an extracellular Tau chaperone and further characterize the interactions between S100B and Tau.

    • Guilherme G. Moreira
    • François-Xavier Cantrelle
    • Cláudio M. Gomes
    ArticleOpen Access
  • Priors learnt from lifetime experiences influence perception. The authors show that when perception is congruent with a long-term prior, there is increased top-down input in the ventral visual stream, whereas bottom-up input is enhanced when perception is incongruent with prior.

    • Richard Hardstone
    • Michael Zhu
    • Biyu J. He
    ArticleOpen Access
  • Invasive species could have cascading effects on ecosystem functioning. Here the authors use experimental and remote sensing data and modelling to show that an invasive mammal causes loss of facilitative interactions between sessile ecosystem engineers in salt marshes, and lower ecosystem resilience to disturbance.

    • Marc J. S. Hensel
    • Brian R. Silliman
    • Jarrett E. K. Byrnes
    ArticleOpen Access
  • A major challenge in magnon based approaches to information processing lies in developing valves to allow or supress the magnon signal. Here, Chen et al demonstrate a van der Waals magnet based magnon valve which can be tuned electrically over an exceptionally wide range.

    • Guangyi Chen
    • Shaomian Qi
    • Jian-Hao Chen
    ArticleOpen Access
  • There are many hypotheses for why the tropics are more biodiverse than higher latitudes. Phylogenomic analyses of 21 montane birds finds that tropical birds disperse less and have more genetically structured populations than their counterparts at higher latitudes, possibly due to a larger elevational climate gradient in the tropics

    • Gregory Thom
    • Marcelo Gehara
    • Fábio Raposo do Amaral
    ArticleOpen Access
  • TRPV6 is a calcium-selective ion channel that is involved in numerous calcium-dependent physiological processes and it is of interest as a potential drug target. Here, the authors present the cryo-EM structures of human TRPV6 with the bound inhibitors ruthenium red and the antifungal drug econazole and discuss their inhibition mechanisms.

    • Arthur Neuberger
    • Kirill D. Nadezhdin
    • Alexander I. Sobolevsky
    ArticleOpen Access
  • The response of the electronic structure to the non-trivial polarization texture in PbTiO3/SrTiO3 superlattices has not been explored. Here, the authors reveal how the peaks of the spectra shift and change their local electronic structure depending on the position of the Ti cation.

    • Sandhya Susarla
    • Pablo García-Fernández
    • Javier Junquera
    ArticleOpen Access