Journal Club

Highlighting recently published papers selected by Academy members

Journal Club: Zika virus causes eye problems, suggesting implications for diagnostics and transmission

A significant number of Zika patients experience problems with their eyes. Now scientists find that the Zika virus can infect every part of the eye in mice. Moreover, its RNA can be detected in teardrops, and samples from infected eyes … Continue reading

Categories: Immunology | Journal Club | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Journal Club: Clues into how dormant cancer cells come alive

Tumors can come equipped with time-bombs—cells that migrate through the bloodstream, lodge in a distant organ, and then enter a dormant state. A new study of such cells in the lungs of mice examines how they wake up from dormancy … Continue reading

Categories: Biochemistry | Cell Biology | Journal Club | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Journal Club: Finding new ways to store higher-density information with ferroelectric materials

Recent findings suggest early proof of principle for a new way to read, write and erase information in much smaller areas than conventional memory. The method entails ferroelectric thin films, which store information using the domains’ polarization directions like the … Continue reading

Categories: Applied Physical Sciences | Journal Club | Physics | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Journal Club: Virus-infected plants create buzz among bees

A bout of a viral infection can leave tomato plants stunted and their leaves sickly. But it might offer a surprising reproductive boost: infected plants release a different smell than healthy ones, and that unique aroma can draw more bees … Continue reading

Categories: Journal Club | Plant Biology | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Journal Club: “Sandman” molecule controls when fruit flies wake up

Sleep cuts people off from the outside world, which entails considerable risks and costs that scientists reason must be counterbalanced by a vital but enigmatic benefit. Now scientists have discovered what makes a switch flip in the brains of fruit … Continue reading

Categories: Journal Club | Neuroscience | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Journal Club: Female flies fight back against mate-guarding by males

After mating, males of many species take steps to keep their partners from having sex with other males. But some females may have evolved tricks to foil these measures. Researchers studying the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster have discovered that when … Continue reading

Categories: Developmental Biology | Journal Club | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Journal Club: Animals that glow for courtship have more species

The distinct blinking pattern of fireflies enables mate recognition and, thus, the perpetuation of the species. But it seems this flashy courtship ritual could be driving the formation of new species, too. A new analysis of diverse animal lineages—from octopuses … Continue reading

Categories: Biochemistry | Evolution | Journal Club | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Journal Club: Removing an immune inhibitor helps protect against lethal fungal infections

Protecting cells from out-of-control immune reactions comes at a price: the same protein that quiets B and T cells to prevent autoimmune responses may also hinder the body’s fight against pathogens. Now researchers have found that in the case of … Continue reading

Categories: Immunology | Journal Club | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Journal Club: Friction of the vacuum could slow the rotation of pulsars

A vacuum is by definition a space entirely devoid of matter, so one might naturally assume that objects in a vacuum do not encounter friction. However, quantum physics implies that the vacuum is not actually completely empty, but is rather … Continue reading

Categories: Journal Club | Physics | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Journal Club: Low-calorie diets might improve effectiveness of cancer treatments

The old saying goes, “feed a cold, starve a fever”—now scientists might add, “starve a tumor.” In mice, a low-protein, low-calorie diet sensitizes breast cancer and melanoma cells to attack by the immune system, while prodding the immune system itself … Continue reading

Categories: Cell Biology | Immunology | Journal Club | Tagged , , | Leave a comment