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Nature Biotechnology

April 2018 Volume 36, Issue 4

News and Views
Careers and Recruitment
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Nature Research Custom presents a webcast on: Accelerating the Discovery of New Antimicrobial Compounds

Date: Thursday, April 26, 2018

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Nature Index 2018 Japan

Some of Japan's smallest institutions are among the most efficient in the production of high quality scientific research, though the decline in Japan's high quality scientific research output continues. This supplement examines reform efforts in light of the country's aim to become a "super-smart" society.

Read the full supplement

Nature Neuroscience: Poster on Cerebral Organoids

Emerging three-dimensional culture methods enable differentiated human stem cells to form into brain organoids or assembloids, which can be used to study evolution, development, and disease. 

Available to download free online 

Produced with support from 
STEMCELL Technologies 



The long view on sequencing   p287
Ultra-long read, single-molecule nanopore sequencers are beginning to find an expanding set of research applications in both human genomics and pathogenomics.



Roche pays $1.9 billion for Flatiron's army of electronic health record curators   pp289 - 290
Justin Petrone

FDA approves stroke-detecting AI software   p290

New drug for multidrug-resistant HIV   p291

Rollout of high-priced cell and gene therapies forces payer rethink   pp291 - 292
Melanie Senior

Low-molecular-weight albumin drug touted for severe osteoarthritis   p293
Cormac Sheridan

Critics say 'right to try' wrong for patients   pp294 - 295
Christopher Morrison

Around the world in a month   p296

The Trianni Mouse™ platform is the only transgenic antibody discovery platform ever developed that offers the entirety of human antibody variable gene diversity in a single organism.

The V-gene segments in The Trianni Mouse are chimeric, but the variable domains of antibodies made by the mouse are entirely human. The result is human antibody leads generated from antibody genes optimized for function in the mouse. Or, in the simplest terms, The Trianni Mouse is a more human mouse. 

Learn more 



Nature Biotechnology's academic spinouts of 2017   pp297 - 306
Malorye Allison Branca, Ken Garber and Laura DeFrancesco
Our annual survey highlights how immune-oncology and screens based on the application of cutting-edge omics technologies are providing a launchpad for a succession of startups interrogating biology across biomedicine.


Gender differences in obtaining and maintaining patent rights   pp307 - 309
Kyle Jensen, Balázs Kovács and Olav Sorenson
An examination of the prosecution and maintenance histories of approximately 2.7 million US patent applications indicates that women have less favorable outcomes than men.

Recent patents in tumor detection and treatment   p310

News and Views


Patching the retina with stem cells   pp311 - 313
Kapil Bharti
An engineered patch of retinal pigment epithelium shows promise in two macular degeneration patients.

Portable gene expression guaranteed   pp313 - 314
Marios Tomazou and Guy-Bart Stan
Synthetic biology is made more reliable by borrowing ideas from systems and control theory.

Research Highlights   p314

Epigenome editing to the rescue   p315
Markus Elsner

JOBS of the week
Postdoctoral Researcher
University of Pennsylvania
Post-doctoral fellow
Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis
Bioinformatics Specialist
Massachusetts General Hospital
Epidemiology, Data Science, Statistics and Bioinformatics Faculty
Boston University School of Medicine, BUMC
Senior Project Manager
University of Glasgow
More Science jobs from
Medical Biotechnology
Gent, Belgium
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Metabolomics activity screening for identifying metabolites that modulate phenotype   pp316 - 320
Carlos Guijas, J Rafael Montenegro-Burke, Benedikt Warth, Mary E Spilker and Gary Siuzdak
Metabolomics activity screening can identify small-molecule metabolites that are readily available and can be used to alter phenotypes, including stem cell differentiation, T-cell survival, oligodendrocyte maturation, and insulin signaling.

Brief Communications

Linear assembly of a human centromere on the Y chromosome OPEN   pp321 - 323
Miten Jain, Hugh E Olsen, Daniel J Turner, David Stoddart, Kira V Bulazel et al.
Repeat regions in the human Y chromosome centromere are assembled using long-read nanopore sequencing.

Base editing with a Cpf1-cytidine deaminase fusion   pp324 - 327
Xiaosa Li, Ying Wang, Yajing Liu, Bei Yang, Xiao Wang et al.
A new fusion protein enables precise editing of single bases in A/T-rich regions of the human genome.


Phase 1 clinical study of an embryonic stem cell-derived retinal pigment epithelium patch in age-related macular degeneration   pp328 - 337
Lyndon da Cruz, Kate Fynes, Odysseas Georgiadis, Julie Kerby, Yvonne H Luo et al.
An engineered patch of retinal pigment epithelium generated from human embryonic stem cells is transplanted into the eyes of two patients.

Nanopore sequencing and assembly of a human genome with ultra-long reads OPEN   pp338 - 345
Miten Jain, Sergey Koren, Karen H Miga, Josh Quick, Arthur C Rand et al.
A human genome is sequenced and assembled de novo using a pocket-sized nanopore device.


IL-7 and CCL19 expression in CAR-T cells improves immune cell infiltration and CAR-T cell survival in the tumor   pp346 - 351
Keishi Adachi, Yosuke Kano, Tomohiko Nagai, Namiko Okuyama, Yukimi Sakoda et al.
Chimeric antigen receptor (CAR)-T cells expressing the cytokines IL-7 and CCL19 show improved clearance of established solid tumors in mice.

Engineered promoters enable constant gene expression at any copy number in bacteria   pp352 - 358
Thomas H Segall-Shapiro, Eduardo D Sontag and Christopher A Voigt
A series of feedforward-stabilized bacterial gene promoters produce near-identical expression levels regardless of copy number changes due to altered genetic context, strain or growth conditions.


Cultivation and sequencing of rumen microbiome members from the Hungate1000 Collection OPEN   pp359 - 367
Rekha Seshadri, Sinead C Leahy, Graeme T Attwood, Koon Hoong Teh, Suzanne C Lambie et al.
Rumen microbiome biology gets a boost with the release of 410 high-quality reference genomes from the Hungate1000 project.

Animation on CRISPR: Gene editing and beyond 

The CRISPR-Cas9 system has revolutionised gene editing, but cutting DNA isn't all it can do.

This Animation, from Nature Methods, explores where CRISPR might be headed next. 

Watch the Animation >> 

Produced with support from: 



Erratum: Open-source, community-driven microfluidics with Metafluidics   p368
David S Kong, Todd A Thorsen, Jonathan Babb, Scott T Wick, Jeremy J Gam et al.

Erratum: The illusion of control in germline engineering policy   p368
Harald Konig

Erratum: 1,003 reference genomes of bacterial and archaeal isolates expand coverage of the tree of life   p368
Supratim Mukherjee, Rekha Seshadri, Neha J Varghese, Emiley A Eloe-Fadrosh, Jan P Meier-Kolthoff et al.

Erratum: Pearl millet genome sequence provides a resource to improve agronomic traits in arid environments   p368
Rajeev K Varshney, Chengcheng Shi, Mahendar Thudi, Cedric Mariac, Jason Wallace et al.

Erratum: Visualizing detailed postdoctoral employment trends using a new career outcome taxonomy   p368
Hong Xu, Richard S T Gilliam, Shyamal D Peddada, Gregory M Buchold and Tammy R L Collins

Careers and Recruitment


Involving undergraduates in genomics research to narrow the education-research gap   pp369 - 371
Serghei Mangul, Lana S Martin and Eleazar Eskin
Engaging undergraduates in computational tasks can improve genomic research laboratory productivity, benefiting both students and senior laboratory members.


People   p372

Ionis Pharmaceuticals, Nature Structural and Molecular Biology & Nature Biotechnology present:

RNA at the Bench & Bedside
October 8-10, La Jolla, USA

RNA therapeutics is poised to deliver major advances. This conference will discuss the many roles of RNAs and the translation of basic science into new therapies. It will address the opportunities, current status and future of this exciting field.
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