Health care

  • Article
    | Open Access

    The decision when to stop an intervention is a critical component of parasite elimination programmes, but reliance on surveillance data alone can be inaccurate. Here, Michael et al. combine parasite transmission model predictions with disease survey data to more reliably determine when interventions can be stopped.

    • Edwin Michael
    • , Morgan E. Smith
    •  & Frank O. Richards
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Micromotors have a range of potential healthcare applications. Here, the authors describe the development of a metal nanoparticle DNA micromotor which can be used to detect human HIV-1 by a change in the motion of the micromotors, monitored by cell phone camera, triggered by binding of HIV-1 RNA.

    • Mohamed Shehata Draz
    • , Kamyar Mehrabi Kochehbyoki
    •  & Hadi Shafiee
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Health care in the United States is heterogeneous with respect to factors like disease incidence, treatment choices and health care spending. Here, the authors use insurance claims data from over 150 million patients to compare prescription rates of over 600 drugs, and uncover patterns of geographical variation that suggest an influence of race, health care laws and wealth.

    • Rachel D. Melamed
    •  & Andrey Rzhetsky
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Fluorescent tracers are being tested in clinical trials to improve detection of tumor margins, but procedures are not standardised. Here, the authors develop an analytical framework that is compatible with the workflow in the operating theatre, and show that it leads to an 88% increase in intraoperative detection of tumor margins in patients with breast cancer.

    • Marjory Koller
    • , Si-Qi Qiu
    •  & Gooitzen M. van Dam
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Conventional coil arrays require complex decoupling technologies to reduce electromagnetic coupling between coil elements. Here, the authors report a self-decoupled RF coil design that achieves high inter-coil isolation between adjacent and non-adjacent elements and mixed arrays of loops and dipoles

    • Xinqiang Yan
    • , John C. Gore
    •  & William A. Grissom
  • Article
    | Open Access

    The engagement of DNA-binding drugs to their target is difficult to study, particularly in vivo. Here the authors develop an in vivo fluorescence lifetime imaging confocal laparo/endomicroscope to show intra- and inter-tumor heterogeneity in doxorubicin binding to peritoneal metastases, which depends on the route of administration.

    • Hugh Sparks
    • , Hiroshi Kondo
    •  & Erik Sahai
  • Article
    | Open Access

    The Southern (SWR) and Northern (NWR) are two subspecies of the White Rhinoceros with the NWR being almost extinct. Here, using assisted reproduction technology, the authors produce and cryopreserve SWR purebred and NWR-SWR hybrid embryos developed to the blastocyst stage, and also generate embryonic stem cell lines, in an attempt to save genes of the NWR.

    • Thomas B. Hildebrandt
    • , Robert Hermes
    •  & Cesare Galli
  • Article
    | Open Access

    The authors examine the role of monkey populations in the sylvatic cycle of chikungunya virus in the Kédougou region, Senegal. The authors show that monkeys are amplification hosts, as opposed to reservoir hosts for infection. These findings expand our knowledge of the transmission dynamics of chikungunya virus in this region of Senegal.

    • Benjamin M. Althouse
    • , Mathilde Guerbois
    •  & Kathryn A. Hanley
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Individuals with different genotypes may respond differently to environmental variation. Here, Favé et al. find substantial impacts of different environment exposures on the transcriptome and clinical endophenotypes when controlling for genetic ancestry by analyzing data from 1000 individuals from a founder population in Quebec.

    • Marie-Julie Favé
    • , Fabien C. Lamaze
    •  & Philip Awadalla
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Sepsis is characterized by deregulated host response to infection. Efficient therapies are still needed but a limitation for sepsis treatment is the heterogeneity in patients. Here Sweeney et al. generate prognostic models based on gene expression to improve risk stratification classification and prediction for 30-day mortality of patients.

    • Timothy E. Sweeney
    • , Thanneer M. Perumal
    •  & Raymond J. Langley
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Zika virus infection during pregnancy can result in birth defects, but underlying pathogenesis at the maternal-fetal interface is unclear. Here, the authors use non-invasive in vivo imaging of Zika-infected rhesus macaques and show that infection results in abnormal oxygen transport across the placenta.

    • Alec J. Hirsch
    • , Victoria H. J. Roberts
    •  & Daniel N. Streblow
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Understanding global epidemics spread is crucial for preparedness and response. Here the authors introduce an analytical framework to study epidemic spread on air transport networks, and demonstrate its power to estimate key epidemic parameters by application to the recent influenza pandemic and Ebola outbreak.

    • Lin Wang
    •  & Joseph T. Wu
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Mass drug administration depends on the distributors’ contact with community members. Using data of deworming treatment distribution from Ugandan villages, the authors show that community medicine distributors with tightly-knit friendship connections achieve the greatest reach and speed of coverage.

    • Goylette F. Chami
    • , Andreas A. Kontoleon
    •  & David W. Dunne
  • Article
    | Open Access

    The current FDA-approved whole blood stabilization method for circulating tumor cell (CTC) isolation suffers from RNA degradation. Here the authors combine hypothermic preservation and antiplatelet strategies to stabilize whole blood up to 72 h without compromising CTC yield and RNA integrity.

    • Keith H. K. Wong
    • , Shannon N. Tessier
    •  & Mehmet Toner
  • Article
    | Open Access

    International and domestic interprovincial trade of China are entangled, but their health impacts have been treated separately in earlier studies. Here Wang. quantify the complex impacts of trade on public health across China within an integrative framework.

    • Haikun Wang
    • , Yanxu Zhang
    •  & Michael B. McElroy
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Current approaches to visualise brown adipose tissue (BAT) rely primarily on markers that reflect its metabolic activity. Here, the authors show that PD-L1 is expressed on brown adipocytes, does not change upon BAT activation, and that BAT volume in mice can be measured by PET-CT with a radiolabeled anti-PD-L1 antibody.

    • Jessica R. Ingram
    • , Michael Dougan
    •  & Hidde L. Ploegh
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Islet transplantation is considered one of the potential treatments for T1DM but limited islet survival and their impaired function pose limitations to this approach. Here Loh et al. show that the Y1 receptor is expressed in β- cells and inhibition of its signalling, both genetic and pharmacological, improves mouse and human islet function.

    • Kim Loh
    • , Yan-Chuan Shi
    •  & Herbert Herzog
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Early detection of gum inflammation caused by dental implants helps prevent tissue damage. Here, the authors present a peptide sensor that generates a bitter taste when cleaved by proteases present in peri-implant disease, embed it in a chewing gum, and compare the probe to existing sensors using patient saliva.

    • J. Ritzer
    • , T. Lühmann
    •  & L. Meinel
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Primary dysmenorrhoea, the most common gynaecologic complaint, remains genetically and pathophysiologically elusive. Here, Li and colleagues identify common variants inZMIZ1 and near NGFconferring risk for primary dysmenorrhoea using genome-wide association study in a Chinese population.

    • Zhiqiang Li
    • , Jianhua Chen
    •  & Yongyong Shi
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Some argue that health-related behaviours, such as obesity, are contagious, but empirical evidence of health contagion remains inconclusive. Here, using a large scale quasi-experiment in a global network of runners, Aral and Nicolaides show that this type of contagion exists in fitness behaviours.

    • Sinan Aral
    •  & Christos Nicolaides
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Iron oxide microparticles (MPIO) are better MRI contrast agents than nanoparticles, but are of limited clinical use as they are not degradable and so risk toxicity. Here the authors present an iron oxide microparticle MRI contrast agent with peptide linkers that enable degradation into non-toxic nanoparticlesin vivo.

    • Francisco Perez-Balderas
    • , Sander I. van Kasteren
    •  & Benjamin G. Davis
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Pain is affected by cerebral processes in addition to afferent nociceptive input. Here the authors develop an fMRI-based signature that predicts pain independent of the intensity of nociceptive signals and mediates the pain-modulating effects of several cognitive interventions.

    • Choong-Wan Woo
    • , Liane Schmidt
    •  & Tor D. Wager
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Brown adipose tissue (BAT) takes up and burns fatty acids for thermogenesis in mice. Here the authors use PET to show that, in humans, cold stimulation increases BAT dietary fatty acid uptake from plasma and oxidative metabolism, although, unlike mice, human BAT takes up less fatty acids than other metabolic tissues.

    • Denis P. Blondin
    • , Hans C. Tingelstad
    •  & André C. Carpentier
  • Article
    | Open Access

    MRI imaging can be significantly enhanced by injecting highly magnetized chemical agents, but the short magnetization lifetime requires processing at the point of use. Here, the authors demonstrate a method that could extend the lifetime from seconds to hours, enabling remote preparation.

    • Xiao Ji
    • , Aurélien Bornet
    •  & Sami Jannin
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Use of soluble boron compounds in prostate cancer therapy is hampered by their short half-life time and low effectiveness. Here, the authors show that boron nitride nanospheres with controlled boron release can reduce proliferation of prostate cancer cells and inhibit tumour growth in animal models.

    • Xia Li
    • , Xiupeng Wang
    •  & Dmitri Golberg
  • Article
    | Open Access

    TSC22D4 regulates hepatic lipoprotein production, but has so far mainly been studied in the context of cancer cachexia. Here, the authors show TSC22D4 inhibition improves insulin sensitivity in several mouse models of diabetes, which they attribute at least in part to the induction of secreted LCN13.

    • Bilgen Ekim Üstünel
    • , Kilian Friedrich
    •  & Stephan Herzig
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Nanomedicine efficacy in a clinical setting depends on the pharmacological properties of the therapeutic nanoparticles. Here, the authors exemplify an accelerated translational strategy from small-scale screening to clinical scale-up for an orally-dosed aqueous paediatric HIV nanomedicine.

    • Marco Giardiello
    • , Neill J. Liptrott
    •  & Andrew Owen
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Magnetic resonance fingerprinting (MRF) requires a uniform B1+ radiofrequency field. Here the authors present plug-n-play MRF, a technique that enables multiparametric imaging with heterogeneous B1+fields, and demonstrate its utility in the presence of RF distortion caused by a metallic orthopaedic implant.

    • Martijn A. Cloos
    • , Florian Knoll
    •  & Daniel K. Sodickson
  • Article
    | Open Access

    NSAID-induced analgesia is typically induced by inhibition of COX enzymes. Here the authors show instead that fenamate NSAIDs inhibit the Nlrp3 inflammasome via an effect on volume-regulated anion channel function and also repurpose these drugs for therapeutic effect in rodent models of Alzheimer disease.

    • Michael J. D. Daniels
    • , Jack Rivers-Auty
    •  & David Brough
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Exosomes have been identified as promising vehicles for the in vivodelivery of therapeutic molecules. Here the authors design a system to load protein cargos into exosomes during their biogenesis using optogenetic control of protein-protein interactions between the cargo and an exosome-localized partner.

    • Nambin Yim
    • , Seung-Wook Ryu
    •  & Chulhee Choi
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Two-photon laser scanning microscopy allows functional calcium imaging of large neuronal populations in vivo, but the recorded signals typically suffer from low signal to noise. Here the authors develop an algorithm, MLspike, which estimates action potentials from noisy calcium signals, and benchmark it against existing methods.

    • Thomas Deneux
    • , Attila Kaszas
    •  & Ivo Vanzetta
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Hrd1 is an E3 ubiquitin ligase involved in ER-associated degradation and MHC I turnover. Here the authors use T-cell-specific ko mice and a mouse model of multiple sclerosis to show that Hrd1 also drives pro-inflammatory T helper cell responses and contributes to pathogenesis of autoimmune disease.

    • Yuanming Xu
    • , Fang Zhao
    •  & Deyu Fang
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Evidence of how functional Bregs develop in vivo has been lacking. Here the authors show that proB cells exposed in vivoto CpG differentiate into distinct Breg subsets that inhibit autoimmunity by arresting T cells in the lymph nodes via CCL19 and by producing IL-10 at the site of immunopathology.

    • Sarantis Korniotis
    • , Christophe Gras
    •  & Flora Zavala
  • Article
    | Open Access

    High-throughput imaging methods for brain-wide connectome mapping with precise location reference have been lacking. Here authors report a method that allows simultaneous acquisition of fluorescently labelled neurons and cytoarchitectural landmarks in the same mouse brain at the single-cell resolution.

    • Hui Gong
    • , Dongli Xu
    •  & Qingming Luo
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Dry eye disease is a complex condition with limited treatments. Here the authors show that mice lacking a multi-functional peptide PACAP develop dry eye-like signs that can be topically treated with PACAP peptide that stimulates tearing in mice, suggesting a possible therapy in humans with dry eyes.

    • Tomoya Nakamachi
    • , Hirokazu Ohtaki
    •  & Seiji Shioda
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Endothelial to mesenchymal transition (EndMT) is a crucial developmental process that also plays a role in the pathogenesis of some diseases. Here the authors show that EndMT contributes to the development of atherosclerosis in mice and humans, and is associated with complex human plaques that may be prone to rupture.

    • Solene M. Evrard
    • , Laura Lecce
    •  & Jason C. Kovacic
  • Article
    | Open Access

    miR125b-5p has been associated with acute liver failure. Here the authors show that this miRNA targets Keap1 and activates Nrf2 to inhibit liver cell death after APAP or FAS toxicity, plus they show that a miR125b-5p mimic can inhibit ALF in mice.

    • Dakai Yang
    • , Qinggong Yuan
    •  & Amar Deep Sharma
  • Article
    | Open Access

    The genetic factors that predispose individuals to familial colorectal cancer are poorly understood. In this study, the authors use whole exome sequencing of 1,006 patients and 1,609 healthy controls and show it is unlikely that further major high-penetrance susceptibility genes exist.

    • Daniel Chubb
    • , Peter Broderick
    •  & Richard S. Houlston
  • Article
    | Open Access

    APC is a well-known tumour suppressor that is frequently inactivated in colorectal cancer. Here, the authors sequence more than 1000 cancer genes in 468 colorectal cancers and show that mutation signatures can be used to classify the tumours and that multiple mutations in APCare associated with a poor prognosis.

    • Michael J. Schell
    • , Mingli Yang
    •  & Timothy J. Yeatman
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Functional imaging in awake head-fixed mice is a widely used technique to study neural responses. Here the authors report on an open source, fully automated unsupervised system for training mice to self initiate head fixation to enable stable mesoscopic functional imaging of cortical functional connectivity.

    • Timothy H. Murphy
    • , Jamie D. Boyd
    •  & Jeff M. LeDue