Comment

  • Comment |

    Michiel Vermeulen and Jérôme Déjardin recommend how best to characterize the proteins that bind any specific genomic locus.

    • Michiel Vermeulen
    •  & Jérôme Déjardin
  • Comment |

    David Jones discusses problems associated with the application of machine learning to biology and advocates for improving publishing standards in this area through a more thorough reporting on the design of the computational experiments.

    • David T. Jones
  • Comment |

    Stahl and Raposo discuss the emerging paradigm of cell–cell signalling via extracellular vesicles, highlighting key questions that need to be answered to firmly establish extracellular vesicles as important signalling entities.

    • Graça Raposo
    •  & Philip D. Stahl
  • Comment |

    Kroemer and Lopez-Otín discuss how the induction of autophagy could slow down human ageing and thus also delay the onset of ageing-associated diseases, by decelerating biological clocks.

    • Carlos Lopez-Otín
    •  & Guido Kroemer
  • Comment |

    Michael Levin and colleagues discuss the need to rethink how the causes of cell biological processes are being identified.

    • Mariano Bizzarri
    • , Douglas E. Brash
    • , James Briscoe
    • , Verônica A. Grieneisen
    • , Claudio D. Stern
    •  & Michael Levin
  • Comment |

    G protein coupled receptors (GPCRs) transmit a variety of signals, mostly by engaging G proteins, but G protein-independent signalling through arrestins has also been demonstrated. Based on recent experimental evidence, Gutkind and Kostenis argue that arrestins serve as important signal modulators instead of as independent signal transducers.

    • J. Silvio Gutkind
    •  & Evi Kostenis
  • Comment |

    Biomolecules can phase separate and form condensates that have roles in diverse cellular processes and contexts. Michnick and Bergeron-Sandoval comment on this rapidly progressing field and envisage that the study of biological phase separation will bring new understanding of cell and developmental biology.

    • Stephen W. Michnick
    •  & Louis-Philippe Bergeron-Sandoval
  • Comment |

    Cellular organelles extensively communicate with each other by close interactions, known as membrane contact sites. Schuldiner and Bohnert comment on the progress of this rapidly developing field, highlighting that the complexity of interactions at membrane contact sites is only now starting to emerge.

    • Maria Bohnert
    •  & Maya Schuldiner
  • Comment |

    Synthetic biology is maturing into a true engineering discipline for model microorganisms, but remains far from straightforward for most eukaryotes. Here, we outline the key challenges facing those trying to engineer biology across eukaryota and suggest areas of focus that will aid future progress.

    • Francesca Ceroni
    •  & Tom Ellis
  • Comment |

    The commonly used budding yeast strain W303 carries a mutant RAD5 gene (rad5-535), but numerous laboratories use a strain corrected for the mutation. This has resulted in different phenotypes of W303 cells in similar experiments. Here, we aim to raise awareness of the issue to ensure data reproducibility and interpretation.

    • Menattallah Elserafy
    •  & Sherif F. El-Khamisy
  • Comment |

    Fiona M. Watt at King’s College London Centre for Stem Cells and Regenerative Medicine (UK) discusses how gender balance in the scientific community is evolving.

    • Fiona M. Watt
  • Comment |

    Mary Herbert and Doug Turnbull discuss how the transmission of pathogenic mutations in mitochondrial DNA may be prevented by reproductive techniques designed to replace the mitochondria in eggs from affected women.

    • Mary Herbert
    •  & Doug Turnbull
  • Comment |

    Images are an integral part of reporting scientific data and conveying concepts in science. Janke and Chabrier argue for the importance of hand drawing — the original form of representation in science — as a complementary medium to photographs and schematics used in science publications today.

    • Renaud Chabrier
    •  & Carsten Janke
  • Comment |

    Novoa, Mason and Mattick propose to use phage display technology and direct sequencing through nanopores to facilitate systematic interrogation of RNA modifications.

    • Eva Maria Novoa
    • , Christopher E. Mason
    •  & John S. Mattick
  • Comment |

    Job Dekker asserts that cases in which data from microscopy- and 3C-based methods appear discordant about genome organization will provide opportunities to improve our models of chromatin folding.

    • Job Dekker
  • Comment |

    Sibon and Strauss discuss literature suggesting that cells can obtain intracellular coenzyme A by pathways in addition tode novobiosynthesis.

    • Ody C.M. Sibon
    •  & Erick Strauss
  • Comment |

    Tomas Lindahl presents a case for keeping DNA in the organic solvent glycol, in which it keeps its activity and is better protected from contamination and, potentially, radiation.

    • Tomas Lindahl