Researchers at the Westlake Laboratory of Life Sciences and Biomedicine, Westlake University, and elsewhere consider the consequences of microbes found inside breast cancer cells in a spontaneous mouse model of the disease. Along with 16S ribosomal RNA sequencing analyses on microbes in normal breast and tumor tissue, the team explored the apparent metastatic contributions of these intracellular bacteria, which seemed to boost circulating tumor cell survival and metastatic growth. "Tumor-resident intracellular microbiota is an emerging tumor component that has been documented for a variety of cancer types with unclear biological functions," the authors explain. "Our findings suggest that tumor-resident microbiota, albeit at low biomass, play an important role in promoting cancer metastasis, intervention of which might therefore be worth exploring for advancing oncology care."
An international team led by researchers at the University of Copenhagen, the Chinese Academy of Sciences, and BGI-Shenzhen consider phylogenetic relationships for the monito del monte, a small South American marsupial. With whole-genome sequence, phylogenetic, and phenotypic analyses, the researchers placed the monito del monte in a sister lineage relative to Australian marsupials. Among other findings, they described widespread incomplete lineage sorting (ILS) in marsupial genomes, which makes more than one-third of the South American marsupial's genome particularly similar to sequences from Diprotodontia marsupials in Australasia. "Pervasive conflicting phylogenetic signals across the whole genome are consistent with some of the morphological variation among extant marsupials," they write, noting that their follow-up functional experiments provide clues to morphological traits influenced by ILS sequences.
Investigators in Israel report on findings from a single-cell transcriptomic study of scleroderma, also known as systemic sclerosis (SSc), an often-fatal autoimmune disease. Using single-cell RNA sequencing, the team profiled skin and blood samples from 97 individuals with the condition and 56 individuals, uncovering dysregulated LGR5-expressing scleroderma-associated fibroblasts (ScAF) in stromal tissue and other features that were analyzed alongside clinical data. "Single-cell multiome profiling of stromal cells revealed ScAF-specific markers, pathways, regulatory elements, and transcription factors underlining disease development," the authors note, adding that "[s]ystematic analysis of these molecular features with clinical metadata associates specific ScAF targets with disease pathogenesis, and SSc clinical traits."