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Venom Transcriptome
Durban J, Juarez P, Angulo Y, et al. (2011). Profiling the venom gland transcriptomes of Costa Rican snakes by 454 pyrosequencing. BMC Genomics. Epub: doi 0.1186/1471-2164-12-259.

Jordi Durban et al. describe using high-throughput 454 pyrosequencing to investigate the venom gland transcriptomes of eight Costa Rican taxa from five genera of pit vipers. The goal is to eventually improve current anti-venom therapy and to gain a further understanding of the pharmacological potential of venoms, the team says. The authors report "strong discrepancies between the transcriptome-computed and the proteome-gathered toxin compositions were obvious at first sight," adding that "the data indicate that individual mRNA species may be translationally controlled in a species-dependent manner."

Angiogenic Regulation in Cancer
Xie L, Duncan MB, Pahler J, et al. (2011). Counterbalancing angiogenic regulatory factors control the rate of cancer progression and survival in a stage-specific manner. PNAS. Epub: doi 10.1073/pnas.1105041108.

Liang Xie et al. show that administration of the endogenous angiogenesis inhibitors endostatin, thrombospondin-1, and tumstatin peptides, and the deletion of their genes, has neoplastic stage-specific effects on angiogenesis, tumor progression, and survival that is correlated with endothelial expression of receptors in mouse models. They also found that deletion of tumstatin and thrombospondin-1 in mice lacking the p53 tumor suppressor gene results in increased incidence and reduced latency of angiogenic lymphomas associated with diminished overall survival.

Web Resources
Schultheiss SJ. (2011). Ten simple rules for providing a scientific Web resource. PLoS Biology. Epub: doi 10.1371/journal.pcbi.1001126.

Using data culled from a survey of more than 250 providers and users of scientific Web resources, Sebastian Schultheiss presents 10 rules for designing and maintaining such resources. These rules reflect the experiences of survey respondents as well as the author's own. Among the rules Schultheiss lists, he says researchers must plan scientific Web resources carefully, discuss maintenance responsibilities for the site, know their user base, facilitate reproducibility, publish a thorough set of documentation and -parameters settings, and make sure that the application or portal created is an open-source project. "By following these rules, your resource will have a long and productive life," Schultheiss adds.

Chromosome Architecture
Tada K, Susumu H, Sakuno T, et al. (2011). Condensin association with histone H2A shapes mitotic chromosomes. Nature. Epub: doi 10.1038/nature10179.

The authors explore the molecular basis for the spatiotemporal regulation of mitotic chromosome architecture. They show that the fission yeast kinetochore proteins Pcs1 and Mde4 act as a condensin recruiters at kinetochores, and that condensin clamps to microtubule binding sites during metaphase. "In addition to the regional recruitment factors, overall condensin association with chromatin is governed by the chromosomal passenger kinase Aurora B," the team writes. "Condensin phosphorylation and its deposition onto chromosome arms reach a peak during anaphase, when Aurora B kinase relocates from centromeres to the spindle midzone, where the separating chromosome arms are positioned."

The Scan

Genetic Risk Factors for Hypertension Can Help Identify Those at Risk for Cardiovascular Disease

Genetically predicted high blood pressure risk is also associated with increased cardiovascular disease risk, a new JAMA Cardiology study says.

Circulating Tumor DNA Linked to Post-Treatment Relapse in Breast Cancer

Post-treatment detection of circulating tumor DNA may identify breast cancer patients who are more likely to relapse, a new JCO Precision Oncology study finds.

Genetics Influence Level of Depression Tied to Trauma Exposure, Study Finds

Researchers examine the interplay of trauma, genetics, and major depressive disorder in JAMA Psychiatry.

UCLA Team Reports Cost-Effective Liquid Biopsy Approach for Cancer Detection

The researchers report in Nature Communications that their liquid biopsy approach has high specificity in detecting all- and early-stage cancers.