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Volume 23 Issue 3, March 2022

Inspired by the Review on p169.

Cover design: Patrick Morgan.

Research Highlights

  • New work studying the plant Arabidopsis thaliana shows that patterns of observed sequence variants are primarily influenced by biases in initial mutation occurrences rather than by the subsequent selective pressures.

    • Darren J. Burgess
    Research Highlight


  • A report in Science describes a method to generate transient chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cells in vivo via lipid nanoparticle-mediated T cell-targeted delivery of a CAR-encoding nucleoside-modified mRNA.

    • Dorothy Clyde
    In Brief
  • A study in eLife identifies 71 nuclear loci associated with mitochondrial DNA copy number (mtDNA-CN) and reveals a putative causal role for mtDNA-CN in dementia.

    • Dorothy Clyde
    In Brief
  • A paper in Cell reports a chromosome-level genome assembly and methylome for the conifer Pinus tabuliformis. At 25.4 Gb, it the largest gymnosperm genome available to date and provides insight into conifer adaptation.

    • Dorothy Clyde
    In Brief
  • A new study in Nature uses genetic information from a single blood sample to monitor pregnancy progression and to identify women at risk of pre-eclampsia before the onset of symptoms.

    • Michael Attwaters
    Research Highlight
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  • In this Review, Janssen and Lorincz discuss the intricate and multilayered interplay between chromatin marks. Focusing on histone methylation and DNA methylation during mammalian development, they discuss the implications for gene regulation, differentiation and human disease.

    • Sanne M. Janssen
    • Matthew C. Lorincz


    Review Article
  • The authors review overlapping sequences as fundamental features of prokaryotic, eukaryotic and viral genomes, discussing the diverse topologies and functions of overlapping genes, open reading frames and coding sequences. Moreover, they highlight the potential of harnessing sequence overlaps for synthetic biology approaches.

    • Bradley W. Wright
    • Mark P. Molloy
    • Paul R. Jaschke
    Review Article
  • Machine learning is widely applied in various fields of genomics and systems biology. In this Review, the authors describe how responsible application of machine learning requires an understanding of several common pitfalls that users should be aware of (and mitigate) to avoid unreliable results.

    • Sean Whalen
    • Jacob Schreiber
    • Katherine S. Pollard
    Review Article
  • In this Review, the authors discuss explanations for why ultraconserved sequences — which are presumed to be functionally crucial on the basis of strong evolutionary constraint — often result in surprisingly minor phenotypic consequences when experimentally disrupted. They also discuss the wider implications of extreme non-coding conservation for understanding the mechanisms of gene regulation and human variant interpretation.

    • Valentina Snetkova
    • Len A. Pennacchio
    • Diane E. Dickel
    Review Article
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