Volume 26 Issue 4, December 2000

Volume 26 Issue 4

Cover art by Christine McCarthy


News and Views

  • News & Views |

    Mitochondrial uncoupling proteins (UCPs) have long been suspected to have a role in obesity. A study of mice ablated of Ucp2 reveals an unexpected role for the protein in macrophage-mediated immunity. It also supports the notion that the UCP proteins, which uncouple respiration from energy production, might also control the production of reactive oxygen species (ROS).

    • Antonio J Vidal-Puig
  • News & Views |

    Telomere maintenance is required for chromosome stability. Telomeres are maintained principally by the action of the reverse transcriptase telomerase. In cells that lack telomerase, telomere length is preserved by an alternate mechanism termed ALT. A new study reports that recombination between telomeres is responsible for ALT in human cells. As telomerase is a potential target for cancer therapy, these findings indicate that an assault on telomere maintenance may have to contend with two pathways.

    • Susan Smith
  • News & Views |

    Women with breast cancer suffer a high constant risk of a cancer in the opposite breast. A new hypothesis to explain this observation is that a woman's risk of breast cancer starts from a genetically determined age.

    • Doug Easton
  • News & Views |

    Whereas p73 is closely related to the tumour-suppressor protein p53, its contribution to tumour suppression and the spatial and temporal regulation of its isoforms is unclear. It has now been established that p73 is a transcriptional target of E2F1. Its ability to induce apoptosis in TP53−/− cells indicates a tumour-control mechanism that runs parallel to but independent of that mediated by p53. The new results illustrate a complex cross-talk between p53, E2F1 and p73.

    • María S Soengas
    •  & Scott W Lowe


Brief Communications

Book Review