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Volume 19 Issue 1, January 2021

Volume 19 Issue 1

‘Small but mighty’, inspired by the review article on page 23.

Cover design: Philip Patenall

Research Highlights

  • Research Highlight |

    A recent study found that a small RNA released by the bioluminescent bacterium Vibrio fischeri modulates crucial host responses in the Hawaiian bobtailed squid Euprymna scolopes, revealing a new mode of communication in beneficial animal–bacterial symbioses.

    • Ashley York
  • In Brief |

    A recent study found that Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection in mice reprogrammes haematopoietic stem cells, limiting myelopoiesis and impairing trained immunity.

    • Ashley York
  • Research Highlight |

    This study provides insights into how the malaria parasite persists in its human host through the dry season in Mali to enable transmission by mosquitoes during the wet season.

    • Grant Otto
  • Research Highlight |

    This study shows that a distinct gut microbiome composition as well as specific bacterial metabolites provide radioprotection in mice.

    • Andrea Du Toit
  • In Brief |

    This study reported the diversity of CMV, HIV-1 and RSV viral populations during acute infection from clinical samples.

    • Grant Otto
  • In Brief |

    This study reports that retrons function in defence against phage infection by inducing abortive infection.

    • Grant Otto
  • In Brief |

    This study reports a mutant Clamydia muridarum strain that infects the gastrointestinal tract and protects against genital tract infection in mice.

    • Grant Otto

News & Views

  • News & Views |

    The rapid emergence of antibiotic resistance is recognized as a major public health threat. Nanomaterials have risen to tackle this problem through either improving the potency of existing antibiotics or generating entirely new antibacterial mechanisms.

    • Weiwei Gao
    • Liangfang Zhang

News & Analysis

  • Genome Watch |

    This month’s Genome Watch examines how natural language processing and machine learning are being implemented in the hunt for new antimicrobial peptides.

    • Annapaula Correia
    • Aaron Weimann

Reviews

  • Review Article |

    Newly developed antibacterial nanostructured surfaces show excellent prospects as next-generation biomaterials. In this Review, Ivanova, Stoodley and colleagues explore the different mechanisms by which various surface nanopatterns exert the necessary physico-mechanical forces on the bacterial cell membrane that will ultimately result in cell death.

    • Denver P. Linklater
    • Vladimir A. Baulin
    • Elena P. Ivanova
  • Review Article |

    In this Review, Rotello and colleagues discuss the mechanisms by which nanomaterials can be used to target antibiotic-resistant bacterial infections, highlight design elements and properties of nanomaterials that can be engineered to enhance potency, and explore recent progress and remaining challenges for clinical implementation of nanomaterials as antimicrobial therapeutics.

    • Jessa Marie V. Makabenta
    • Ahmed Nabawy
    • Vincent M. Rotello
  • Review Article |

    Escherichia coli is a commensal of the vertebrate gut as well as an opportunistic pathogen. In this Review, Denamur and colleagues explore the emergence of virulence during the evolution of E. coli, with a focus on the main ExPEC, InPEC and hybrid clones.

    • Erick Denamur
    • Olivier Clermont
    • David Gordon
  • Review Article |

    In this Review, Fan and Pedersen discuss how the gut microbiota and derived microbial compounds may contribute to human metabolic health and to the pathogenesis of common metabolic diseases, and highlight examples of microbiota-targeted interventions aiming to optimize metabolic health.

    • Yong Fan
    • Oluf Pedersen

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