Volume 17 Issue 8, August 2016

Volume 17 Issue 8

'Brown and beige fat mice' by Vicky Summersby, inspired by the Review on p480.

Research Highlights


  • Review Article |

    Recent structural, biochemical and single-molecule biophysical studies have elucidated the molecular mechanisms underlying the control of SNARE (soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment protein receptor) complex assembly and disassembly by chaperones.

    • Richard W. Baker
    •  & Frederick M. Hughson
  • Review Article |

    Embryonic, brown adipocytes, together with beige, brown-like adipocytes induced in white fat depots in response to various stimuli, constitute specialized heat-producing fat cells that contribute to organismal energy expenditure. Important insights have now been gained into the transcriptional and epigenetic regulation of biogenesis and thermogenesis of these cells, opening up new possibilities for the treatment of metabolic disorders.

    • Takeshi Inagaki
    • , Juro Sakai
    •  & Shingo Kajimura
  • Review Article |

    Rho GTPases, which cycle between a GTP-bound active form and a GDP-bound inactive form, regulate cytoskeletal and cell adhesion dynamics and thus are crucial for the coordination of cell migration, cell polarity and cell cycle progression. Rho GTPases and their regulators (GEFs, GAPs and GDIs) are also regulated by post-translational modifications and the formation of regulatory complexes to ensure precise spatiotemporal Rho GTPase activation.

    • Richard G. Hodge
    •  & Anne J. Ridley
  • Review Article |

    When animal cells divide, they undergo dramatic changes in shape, polarity and mechanical properties. At mitotic entry, the remodelling of cortical actomyosin and cell–substrate adhesions, combined with osmotic swelling enable cell rounding, which is then reversed as cells exit mitosis. We now have a better understanding of the regulation of such shape changes and how they contribute to accurate segregation of chromosomes and other cellular components.

    • Nitya Ramkumar
    •  & Buzz Baum



  • Opinion |

    Many proteins that canonically function in the cytosol can also localize to the nucleus. The authors propose that a distinct group of such proteins (which they name STRaNDs) engage in a particular mode of signal transduction, whereby in response to extracellular cues, the cytosolic protein transits to the nucleus and regulates gene expression without direct DNA binding.

    • Min Lu
    • , Mary R. Muers
    •  & Xin Lu