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DNA — Now in 3D!

Researchers have been looking for a way to find out how proteins bind to DNA packets, but so far have only been able to speculate, writes Katherine Harmon in Scientific American's Observations blog. But now, researchers at Penn State use x-ray crystallography to visualize the protein binding for the first time in 3D. The group used the RCC1 enzyme, which helps separate chromosomes when a cell divides, to bind to fruit fly DNA, Harmon says, and their results (which were published in Nature) showed that RCC1 binds to opposite sides of the nucleosome. The researchers say this puts us a step closer to knowing how cells read DNA and regulate genes.

The Scan

Two J&J Doses

Johnson & Johnson says two doses of its SARS-CoV-2 vaccine provides increased protection against symptomatic COVID-19, CNN reports.

Pfizer-BioNTech Vaccine Response in Kids

The Pfizer-BioNTech SARS-CoV-2 vaccine in a lower-dose format appears to generate an immune response among children, according to the Washington Post.

Chicken Changes to Prevent Disease

The Guardian writes that researchers are looking at gene editing chickens to help prevent future pandemics.

PNAS Papers on Siberian Dog Ancestry, Insect Reproduction, Hippocampal Neurogenesis

In PNAS this week: ancestry and admixture among Siberian dogs, hormone role in fruit fly reproduction, and more.