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Epigenetics, Brain Informatics, and Turkish Science

This week’s Nature ($) is hot off the press, and it’s a good one.

Maria Elena Torres-Padilla and colleagues publish a report that lends further support to the idea that embryonic cells receive their first developmental orders from epigenetic cues. The report looks at methylation of an arginine amino acid in the histone H3 protein, and pinpoints the histone modifications that influence the move of blastomeres early in the embryo.

The issue also contains the Allen Brain Institute’s research report on producing a genome-wide atlas of gene expression in the mouse brain. The research itself was published online in early December, but now that it’s in print, the report is accompanied by a nice explanatory gloss by the Brain Mind Institute’s Henry Markram.

Responding to a previous news report on anti-evolution trends Europe, which portrayed EU-hopeful Turkey as a hotbed of creationism, a group of Turkish scientists point out in their letter to Nature that all is not lost. Turkey’s scientists and grad students are engaged in building pro-evolution resources, while an NGO has filed a lawsuit against the education ministry to get creationism out of the textbooks.

The Scan

mRNA-Based Vaccine on the Way in China

China may soon have its own mRNA-based vaccine, according to Nature News.

Arranged Killing, Fraud Alleged by Prosecutors

The Wall Street Journal reports that prosecutors allege that the co-founder of a biotech arranged to have a business associate who threatened to expose him as a fraud killed.

Whirlwind Decade of CRISPR

The New York Times looks back at the 10 years since the University of California, Berkeley's Jennifer Doudna and her colleagues published their CRISPR paper.

PNAS Papers on Blue Cone Monochromacy Structural Variants, HIV-1 Mutant, T-ALL

In PNAS this week: structural variants linked to blue cone monochromacy, HIV-1 variants affecting the matrix protein p17, and more.