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Nature in Brief

As usual, Nature is chock full of goodies this week.

Among the gems: In an editorial, the Nature team talks about the launch of a new section of essays designed to delve into the idea of "the interdisciplinary study of complex, dynamic systems." In the first such essay published in the journal, authors Nigel Goldenfeld and Carl Woese expound on the idea that "the emerging picture of microbes as gene-swapping collectives demands a revision of such concepts as organism, species and evolution itself," according to the summary by Nature.

In this news item, Nature reports on a new push by traditional scientific publishing companies (specifically, Elsevier, Wiley, and the American Chemical Society) to gear up for the battle against open access. The trio has retained a PR consultant to help with "media messaging" that would promote traditional peer-reviewed publications.

And here's a paper from a Johns Hopkins-based team studying signal transduction pathways. Lead author Fan Pan and colleagues identify an inhibitor of the Ras signaling pathway, confirmed by the use of siRNAs.


The Scan

Tens of Millions Saved

The Associated Press writes that vaccines against COVID-19 saved an estimated 20 million lives in their first year.

Supersized Bacterium

NPR reports that researchers have found and characterized a bacterium that is visible to the naked eye.

Also Subvariants

Moderna says its bivalent SARS-CoV-2 vaccine leads to a strong immune response against Omicron subvariants, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Science Papers Present Gene-Edited Mouse Models of Liver Cancer, Hürthle Cell Carcinoma Analysis

In Science this week: a collection of mouse models of primary liver cancer, and more.