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This Week in Nature: Feb 25, 2016

In this week's Nature, a team led by University of Queensland researchers reports on the genomic analysis of more than 450 pancreatic ductal adenocarcinomas, revealing a variety of disease subtypes. Through the analysis, the scientists uncovered 32 recurrently mutated genes that aggregate into 10 different pathways. RNA expression profiling was used to define four subtypes, each associated with different histolopathological characteristics and differential survival profiles. Notably, those they fell into the novel immunogenic subtype contained upregulated immune networks including pathways involved in acquired immune suppression, opening the door to the potential use of immune modulators in their treatment. GenomeWeb has more on this study here.

And in Nature Genetics, an international research group publishes the genome sequences of two of the cultivated peanut's diploid ancestors Arachis duranensis and Arachis ipaensis, providing new insights into how the grain legume evolved. They showed how the A. duranensis and A. ipaensis genomes are similar to that of the cultivated peanut's A and B subgenomes, and used them to identify candidate disease resistance genes. The investigators also use their data to suggest that A. ipaensis may be a direct descendant of the same population that contributed to the B genome to the cultivated peanut. GenomeWeb also has more on this here.