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Volume 53 Issue 7, July 2021

Genomic signatures of cancer radiotherapy

When tumors undergo radiation therapy, depicted here as an intense beam hitting a tumor mass, what happens to the DNA, and how does the cell cope with this damage? Analysis of the genomic consequences of radiotherapy for cancer treatment sheds light on these questions, identifying increased genomic deletions and specific signatures of DNA-repair processes in post-treatment primary and metastatic tumors, and relating these genomic events to clinical outcomes.

See Kocakavuk et al.

Image:Science Photo Library/ Alamy Stock Vector. Cover Design: Valentina Monaco.

World View

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News & Views

  • R-loops—nucleic acid structures composed of an RNA:DNA hybrid and displaced single-stranded DNA—are abundant in the genome and may impair progression of the replication fork, thus leading to accumulation of DNA damage and genome instability. A new study demonstrates that SWI/SNF chromatin-remodeling complexes are instrumental in resolving such R-loop-mediated transcription–replication conflicts, highlighting the importance of these chromatin remodelers in R-loop homeostasis and the maintenance of genome integrity.

    • Abdulkadir Abakir
    • Alexey Ruzov
    News & Views
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Technical Reports

  • QUILT is a method for rapid genotype imputation and phasing from low-coverage whole-genome sequence data using a large haplotype reference panel. QUILT enables highly accurate imputation across a range of coverages and data types.

    • Robert W. Davies
    • Marek Kucka
    • Simon Myers
    Technical Report
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