Reviews & Analysis

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  • Commensal gut bacteria harbour sulfotransferases that metabolize cholesterol and some steroid hormones to produce bacterially derived signals that influence host phenotypes.

    • William J. Massey
    • J. Mark Brown
    News & Views
  • The conserved nucleotide diadenosine tetraphosphate (Ap4A) is induced under various stresses, including heat. In a non-biased screen, we identified a critical role of Ap4A in inhibiting a central step in purine metabolism and heat resistance. We clarify the molecular mechanism of Ap4A action on the inosine-5′-monophosphate dehydrogenase (IMPDH) enzyme, showing Ap4A as a bona fide nucleotide second messenger.

    Research Briefing
  • Rapid experimental evolution and targeted genetic engineering of Escherichia coli in a stinkbug host reveals that a single mutation can produce a host-beneficial symbiosis.

    • Martin Kaltenpoth
    News & Views
  • Identification and analysis of mutator strains in the human fungal pathogen Cryptococcus neoformans show that natural loss of RNA interference triggers massive accumulation of Cnl1 retroelements at subtelomeric regions.

    • Manning Y. Huang
    • Hiten D. Madhani
    News & Views
  • Phylogeny estimation of newly discovered aquatic copiotrophic Rickettsiales indicates evolution of host dependency from extracellular species and the origin of mitochondria from an unknown proteobacterial lineage.

    • Victoria I. Verhoeve
    • Joseph J. Gillespie
    News & Views
  • Chikungunya virion assembly is elucidated using cryo-electron tomography to reveal how antibodies protect hosts by blocking virion release from virus-infected cells.

    • Julie M. Fox
    • Theodore C. Pierson
    News & Views
  • Hoenigl and colleagues review the epidemiology, immunology and clinical risk factors contributing to COVID-19-associated fungal infections.

    • Martin Hoenigl
    • Danila Seidel
    • Agostinho Carvalho
    Review Article
  • Women are more affected by sexually transmitted infections than men. This Review examines the impact of non-HIV STIs on women’s health, and discusses recent advances and current challenges in the treatment and prevention of STIs.

    • Olivia T. Van Gerwen
    • Christina A. Muzny
    • Jeanne M. Marrazzo
    Review Article
  • Careful and responsible microbiome management is a critical strategy to counter biodiversity loss, but practical and regulatory hurdles must be addressed to maximize its utility.

    • Raquel S. Peixoto
    • Christian R. Voolstra
    • Gabriele Berg
  • Vaccine immunity against SARS-CoV-2 wanes over time and is generally lower in the older population. Recent studies show that booster doses may increase neutralizing antibodies in older adults and protect against emerging variants, including Omicron.

    • Sara Hägg
    • Dorota Religa
    News & Views
  • The Omicron variant of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has a phenotype that has changed fundamentally compared with preceding variants. Substantial antigenic change within the spike protein and a new endocytic entry mechanism underlie the immune evasion characteristics and a coincident decrease in the virulence of this variant.

    Research Briefing
  • Enteric Salmonella not only activates the ILC3–IL-22 axis upon infection to provide a competitive advantage over resident microbiota but also invades ILC3s and induces inflammatory cell death, thus limiting infection.

    • Ann M. Joseph
    • Gregory F. Sonnenberg
    News & Views
  • Studying the ocean microbiome can inform international policies related to ocean governance, tackling climate change, ocean acidification and pollution, and can help promote achievement of multiple Sustainable Development Goals.

    • Andre Abreu
    • Etienne Bourgois
    • Jan Vanaverbeke
  • Three different studies identify Asgardarchaeota-linked virus genomes that share commonalities with both prokaryotic and eukaryotic viruses, yet they represent independent phylogenetic groups.

    • Tomas Alarcón-Schumacher
    • Susanne Erdmann
    News & Views
  • Well-replicated, ecologically realistic, long-term field experiments were conducted to test the effects of warming on soil microbial diversity. Warming significantly reduced the biodiversity of soil bacteria, fungi and protists by altering environmental selections and biotic interactions, potentially disrupting the functional processes of the soil ecosystem.

    Research Briefing
  • Modelling using metagenomic data has revealed partitioning of the ocean into discrete microbial genomic provinces, but climate change might restructure their global organization.

    • Justin R. Seymour
    News & Views
  • Large-scale CRISPRi chemical genetic screening in Mycobacterium tuberculosis identifies genes altering antibiotic potency and the repurposing of the antibiotic clarithromycin to treat tuberculosis in Southeast Asia.

    • Luiz Pedro Sório de Carvalho
    News & Views
  • Bacteria can be engineered to degrade antibiotics in the gut, maintaining colonization resistance against pathogenic bacteria and constraining the expansion of antibiotic resistance genes in mice.

    • Christine A. Olson
    • Peter J. Turnbaugh
    News & Views