Molecular biology

Molecular Biology is the field of biology that studies the composition, structure and interactions of cellular molecules – such as nucleic acids and proteins – that carry out the biological processes essential for the cell’s functions and maintenance.

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Latest Research and Reviews

News and Comment

  • Research Highlights |

    A new study published in Cell uses bacterial genetic screens to identify mutagenic proteins. Overexpression of homologues of these proteins in human cells has similar mutagenic effects and potential prognostic value in cancer.

    • Darren J. Burgess
  • News and Views |

    Scientists have long wondered how maternal diabetes, malnutrition and placental dysfunction impair fetal nephrogenesis. A new study discovered a link between prenatal metabolic stress and nephron deficit via dysregulation of DNA methylation — an epigenetic mechanism that is essential for the renewal and differentiation of nephron progenitors.

    • Samir S. El-Dahr
  • News and Views |

    Holliday junction resolvases lock dynamic DNA four-way junctions into specific structural conformations for symmetric DNA cleavage. Single-molecule studies now reveal that resolvases can relax their grip, enabling Holliday junction conformer transitions and branch migration in the enzyme-bound form.

    • Ulrich Rass
  • News and Views |

    Stressed eukaryotic cells store mRNAs in protein-rich condensates called stress granules. Using single-molecule tracking techniques to examine how mRNAs enter stress granules, a new study shows that mRNAs make transient contacts with the granule surface before stable association, and become largely immobile after entry.

    • Chih-Yung Lee
    •  & Geraldine Seydoux