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  1. Minireview

    Mapping the protistan 'rare biosphere'

    The use of cultivation-independent approaches to map microbial diversity, including recent work published in BMC Biology, has now shown that protists, like bacteria/archaea, are much more diverse than had been re...

    Scott C Dawson and Kari D Hagen

    Journal of Biology 2009 8:105

    Published on: 29 December 2009

  2. Minireview

    Scribble at the crossroads

    Although proteins involved in determining apical-basal cell polarity have been directly linked to tumorigenesis, their precise roles in this process remain unclear. A recent report in BMC Biology clarifies the si...

    Sandrine Etienne-Manneville

    Journal of Biology 2009 8:104

    Published on: 29 December 2009

  3. Minireview

    The transcriptome of human monocyte subsets begins to emerge

    Human monocytes can be divided into subsets according to their expression or lack of the cell-surface antigen CD16. In papers published recently in the Journal of Proteome Research and in BMC Genomics, two groups...

    Fernando O Martinez

    Journal of Biology 2009 8:99

    Published on: 23 December 2009

  4. Minireview

    Fishing for the signals that pattern the face

    Zebrafish are a powerful system for studying the early embryonic events that form the skull and face, as a model for human craniofacial birth defects such as cleft palate. Signaling pathways that pattern the p...

    Thomas F Schilling and Pierre Le Pabic

    Journal of Biology 2009 8:101

    Published on: 22 December 2009

  5. Opinion

    Promoter architecture and the evolvability of gene expression

    Evolutionary changes in gene expression are a main driver of phenotypic evolution. In yeast, genes that have rapidly diverged in expression are associated with particular promoter features, including the prese...

    Itay Tirosh, Naama Barkai and Kevin J Verstrepen

    Journal of Biology 2009 8:95

    Published on: 14 December 2009

  6. Minireview

    Adaptations of proteins to cellular and subcellular pH

    Bioinformatics-based searches for correlations between subcellular localization and pI or charge distribution of proteins have failed to detect meaningful correlations. Recent work published in BMC Biology finds ...

    Bertrand Garcia-Moreno

    Journal of Biology 2009 8:98

    Published on: 2 December 2009

  7. Research article

    Generalized immune activation as a direct result of activated CD4+T cell killing

    In addition to progressive CD4+ T cell immune deficiency, HIV infection is characterized by generalized immune activation, thought to arise from increased microbial exposure resulting from diminishing immunity.

    Rute Marques, Adam Williams, Urszula Eksmond, Andy Wullaert, Nigel Killeen, Manolis Pasparakis, Dimitris Kioussis and George Kassiotis

    Journal of Biology 2009 8:93

    Published on: 27 November 2009

  8. Opinion

    The nature of cell-cycle checkpoints: facts and fallacies

    The concept of checkpoint controls revolutionized our understanding of the cell cycle. Here we revisit the defining features of checkpoints and argue that failure to properly appreciate the concept is leading ...

    Alexey Khodjakov and Conly L Rieder

    Journal of Biology 2009 8:88

    Published on: 16 November 2009

  9. Minireview

    An expanded evolutionary role for flower symmetry genes

    CYCLOIDEA (CYC)-like TCP genes are critical for flower developmental patterning. Exciting recent breakthroughs, including a study by Song et al. published in BMC Evolutionary Biology, demonstrate that CYC-like ge...

    Lena C Hileman and Pilar Cubas

    Journal of Biology 2009 8:90

    Published on: 6 November 2009

  10. Review

    Mechanisms of ubiquitin transfer by the anaphase-promoting complex

    The anaphase-promoting complex (APC) is a ubiquitin-protein ligase required for the completion of mitosis in all eukaryotes. Recent mechanistic studies reveal how this remarkable enzyme combines specificity in...

    Mary E Matyskiela, Monica C Rodrigo-Brenni and David O Morgan

    Journal of Biology 2009 8:92

    Published on: 26 October 2009

  11. Minireview

    Targeting TNF-α for cancer therapy

    As the tumor vasculature is a key element of the tumor stroma, angiogenesis is the target of many cancer therapies. Recent work published in BMC Cell Biology describes a fusion protein that combines a peptide pre...

    Elizabeth R Burton and Steven K Libutti

    Journal of Biology 2009 8:85

    Published on: 23 October 2009

  12. Minireview

    TEs or not TEs? That is the evolutionary question

    Transposable elements (TEs) have contributed a wide range of functional sequences to their host genomes. A recent paper in BMC Molecular Biology discusses the creation of new transcripts by transposable element i...

    Keren Vaknin, Amir Goren and Gil Ast

    Journal of Biology 2009 8:83

    Published on: 23 October 2009

  13. Minireview

    Adaptation by introgression

    Both selective and random processes can affect the outcome of natural hybridization. A recent analysis in BMC Evolutionary Biology of natural hybridization between an introduced and a native salamander reveals th...

    Michael L Arnold and Noland H Martin

    Journal of Biology 2009 8:82

    Published on: 13 October 2009

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