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  • Using single-cell transcriptomic data, Joanito et al. reveal that colorectal cancers can be defined by the presence of one of two major intrinsic epithelial subtypes, and present a refined molecular classification system for these cancers.

    • Joseph Willson
    Research Highlight
  • This review gives an overview of natural killer (NK) cell-based immunotherapies. The authors describe the various engineering strategies used to increase NK cell cytotoxicity and persistence, as well as the current challenges and opportunities for the future design of next-generation NK cell therapies.

    • Tamara J. Laskowski
    • Alexander Biederstädt
    • Katayoun Rezvani
    Review Article
  • Finding sex differences in the response of patients with melanoma to BRAF/MEK-targeted therapy, Vellano et al. show that this effect is mediated by androgen receptor expression and demonstrate that androgen receptor blockers can enhance treatment response.

    • Joseph Willson
    Research Highlight
  • Diamantopoulou et al. have found that in both mouse models and patients with breast cancer, the timing of spontaneous circulating tumour cell production coincides with sleep.

    • Anna Dart
    Research Highlight
  • Environmental exposure to aristolochic acid-containing plant material and its use in traditional medicines have been linked to a wide range of cancers. In this Review, Das et al. describe the evidence for aristolochic acid as a potent carcinogen and explore the impact of public health measures on preventing aristolochic acid-linked cancers and nephropathy, with a call to action for the implementation of further preventative measures.

    • Samrat Das
    • Shefali Thakur
    • Jiri Zavadil
    Review Article
  • Zhang et al. demonstrate that the adenosine deaminase ADAR1 prevents responsiveness to immune checkpoint blockade (ICB) through acting on cellular Z-nucleic acids, and show inducing Z-nucleic acid formation can induce tumour sensitivity to ICB.

    • Joseph Willson
    Research Highlight
  • Structural variations (SVs), which comprise genome-level aneuploidies and rearrangements, result in both copy number changes and novel interactions between formerly distant genomic elements. This Perspective discusses how the folding of the 3D genome, and differences in its folding across cell types, affect the formation of SVs and their impact on cancer cell fitness in different cancer types.

    • Frank Dubois
    • Nikos Sidiropoulos
    • Rameen Beroukhim
    Perspective
  • In this Journal Club, Kanaan and Copeland discuss a study showing that a high 1,25(OH)2D:25(OH)D molar ratio, indicative of vitamin D metabolism, is inversely related to the risk of highly aggressive prostate cancer in African American men.

    • Yasmine Kanaan
    • Robert L. Copeland
    Journal Club
  • Chen et al. show that gliomagenesis in the olfactory bulb of the brain is directly related to olfactory perception in mice.

    • Anna Dart
    Research Highlight
  • This Review discusses molecular circuitry underlying adaptive plasticity in brain cancer stem cells, highlighting the transcriptional classification of the stem cell state, neoplastic evolution and development of therapeutic resilience, and critical brain-specific microenvironmental inputs with the goal of informing next-generation stem-targeted treatment paradigms.

    • Ryan C. Gimple
    • Kailin Yang
    • Jeremy N. Rich
    Review Article
  • Reticker-Flynn et al. show that exposure of melanoma cells to interferons and immune cells within lymph nodes leads to immune tolerance that promotes metastasis of both these cells and primary tumour cells.

    • Caroline Barranco
    Research Highlight
  • Nonsense-mediated RNA decay (NMD) is a highly conserved RNA surveillance pathway that selectively degrades both normal and mutant mRNAs harbouring stop codons in specific contexts. In this Review, Tan et al. present recent evidence that NMD has a dichotomous role in tumour growth and progression that supports the future use of NMD-modulatory therapy to treat cancer.

    • Kun Tan
    • Dwayne G. Stupack
    • Miles F. Wilkinson
    Review Article
  • This Review discusses the metabolic alterations and vulnerabilities across multiple types of cancer, and describes how these could potentially be targeted using diet in conjunction with pharmacologic therapies.

    • Samuel R. Taylor
    • John N. Falcone
    • Marcus D. Goncalves
    Review Article
  • In this Tools of the Trade article, Amir Giladi describes the development and use of PIC-seq, which enables the direct enrichment and analysis of conjugates of physically interacting cells in the tumour microenvironment.

    • Amir Giladi
    Tools of the Trade
  • In this Tools of the Trade article, Yaara Oren describes the development and use of the Watermelon system to simultaneously track the lineage, transcriptional profile and proliferative state of each cancer cell in a population, which enables the characterization of rare cycling persister cells.

    • Yaara Oren
    Tools of the Trade
  • This month, Nature Reviews Cancer launches Tools of the Trade articles, in which early career researchers can discuss the methods or techniques that they use to conduct their research.

    Editorial
  • Crist et al. set out to investigate what makes the colonization of skeletal muscle by disseminated tumour cells (DTCs) so rare and found that this niche enforces persistent oxidative stress on DTCs that cannot be overcome and therefore, restrains their proliferation.

    • Anna Dart
    Research Highlight
  • This Perspective discusses the role of multicellular tumour networks, formed by tumour microtubes and tunnelling nanotubes, in brain tumours. It also discusses their relevance to therapy resistance and how these networks might be therapeutically targeted, and their potential relevance in other cancer types.

    • Varun Venkataramani
    • Matthias Schneider
    • Frank Winkler
    Perspective
  • This Perspective discusses how polyamines, polyamine metabolism, the microbiota and the diet interconnect to establish a tumour microenvironment that facilitates the initiation and progression of cancer. It also details ways in which polyamine metabolism and function can be targeted for therapeutic benefit, including specifically enhancing the antitumour immune response.

    • Cassandra E. Holbert
    • Michael T. Cullen
    • Tracy Murray Stewart
    Perspective