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This Week in Science: Mar 21, 2008

A federal court ruled against Pfizer last week in two of the three cases it filed against journals requesting confidential peer-review documents. The company lost against JAMA and the Archives of Internal Medicine, and is still waiting to hear on the decision for NEJM.

Two news articles focus on the fate of large-scale structural biology projects like the Protein Structure Initiative. One wonders whether finding lots of new structures is too costly and not targeted enough. Another questions how useful homology models are for computing the true conformation of proteins. "Although such models often get the general shape of related proteins correct, they typically lack the atomic-scale resolution needed to gain specific insights into how a protein does its job -- or even what job it does," Robert Service writes.

Researchers at the MRC's Centre for Neurodegeneration Research in London have found a pathophysiological link between TDP-43 and ALS (Lou Gehrig's disease). A genome-wide scan found a mutation on chromosome 1p36.

NCI researchers have found that mutations in CARD11, a cytoplasmic scaffolding protein, contribute to diffuse large B cell lymphoma (DLBCL), the most common form of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. In sequencing the CARD11 gene in human DLBCL tumors, they found missense mutations in 9.6 percent of tumors, and after injecting the mutant proteins into lymphoma cell lines, they saw constitutive NF-kB activation, a requirement for malignant cells' survival.


The Scan

Highly Similar

Researchers have uncovered bat viruses that are highly similar to SARS-CoV-2, according to Nature News.

Gain of Oversight

According to the Wall Street Journal, the Biden Administration is considering greater oversight of gain-of-function research.

Lasker for mRNA Vaccine Work

The Scientist reports that researchers whose work enabled the development of mRNA-based vaccines are among this year's Lasker Award winners

PLOS Papers on Causal Variant Mapping, Ancient Salmonella, ALK Fusion Test for NSCLC

In PLOS this week: MsCAVIAR approach to map causal variants, analysis of ancient Salmonella, and more.