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This Week in Science: Mar 12, 2010

In an advance, online publication of Science this week, researchers at the Institute for Systems Biology and Complete Genomics, report whole-genome sequences for a family of four. The researchers write that family-based sequencing allows for precision in deciphering recombination sites (to 99.999 percent accuracy), and the identification of rare single-nucleotide polymorphisms. In sequencing the genomes of the mother, father, and their two offspring — one child affected by Miller syndrome, the other by primary ciliary dyskinesia, both recessive disorders — the team was able to identify candidate inherited disease-causing genes. "Our results demonstrate the unique value of complete genome sequencing in families," the authors write.

In Science this week, researchers describe Lgr6 as a marker for the most primitive epidermal stem cells in mammals. Using a knock-in Lgr6 murine model, the team found that the gene was expressed in the earliest embryonic hair placodes. "Prenatal Lgr6+ cells established the hair follicle, sebaceous gland, and interfollicular epidermis," the team wrote, while, postnatally, Lggr6-positive cells executed long-term wound repair and formed new hair follicles.

Researchers at Wuhan University in China report that "glutamate-induced, dendritic protein synthesis is sequentially regulated by Pin1 and PKM signaling," in Science Signaling this week. They show Pin1 — a peptidyl-prolyl isomerase — to be present in dendritic spines and shafts, inhibiting protein synthesis induced by glutamatergic signaling. They also show that Pin1 supression increased dendritic translation.

In Science Translational Medicine this week, an international research team reports an advantage in SIV-infected major histocompatibility complex-heterozygous Mauritian cynomolgus macaques — specifically, this group shows 80-times less chronic viremia than MHC-homozygous animals. In addition, MHC-heterozygous macaques accumulate fewer variants after one year of SIV infection, the authors write.

The Scan

Billions for Antivirals

The US is putting $3.2 billion toward a program to develop antivirals to treat COVID-19 in its early stages, the Wall Street Journal reports.

NFT of the Web

Tim Berners-Lee, who developed the World Wide Web, is auctioning its original source code as a non-fungible token, Reuters reports.

23andMe on the Nasdaq

23andMe's shares rose more than 20 percent following its merger with a special purpose acquisition company, as GenomeWeb has reported.

Science Papers Present GWAS of Brain Structure, System for Controlled Gene Transfer

In Science this week: genome-wide association study ties variants to white matter stricture in the brain, and more.