Plants have a sophisticated innate immune system with which they defend themselves against a myriad of pathogens. During the past two decades, work in a range of species has advanced our knowledge of the molecular and biochemical details of plant immunity. Many of these studies have focused on the action of nucleotide-binding domain/leucine-rich repeat (NB-LRR or NLR) immune receptors. NLR genes constitute the most diverse gene family in plants, reflecting their role in perceiving a very diverse set of molecules that are released by pathogens. There has also been progress in unraveling the forces that drive diversification of NLR and non-NLR immune receptors in wild species. A major recent insight from mechanistic and evolutionary studies is that there is both cooperation and conflict in the plant immune system. Here, we propose that these two antagonistic forces are inherently entangled, and that they are potentially fundamental to our understanding of growth-defense trade-offs.
awa and Li's main findings about population density, social interaction and happiness are relatively uncontroversial. But Brookings' Carol Graham says one potential flaw in their research is that it defines happiness in terms of self-reported life satisfaction ("How satisfied are you with your life as a whole?"), and doesn't consider experienced well-being ("How many times did you laugh yesterday? How many times were you angry?" etc.). Survey researchers know that these two types of questions can lead to very different assessments of well-being.
This is really cool - you have to check it out. The future of storytelling?
"What’s in your noodle soup? You may never have heard of it before. Cassava - or tapioca - is a root crop like sweet potato originally from South America, where it is steamed or boiled and eaten as a source of carbohydrate. It appears that Spanish traders introduced the species from Mexico to Southeast Asia in the 19th Century, where it survived drought and high temperatures. It’s still eaten as a root crop in some areas, especially in mountainous areas where few other crops will grow. But today it’s also used in a wide range of other foods and markets, and cassava starch is used to make everything from noodles to sweeteners. "
The first prototype of a sodium-ion battery has just been revealed by the RS2E, a French network bringing together researchers and industrial actors. This technology, inspired by the lithium-ion batteries already used in portable computers and electric vehicles, could lead to the mass storage of intermittent renewable energy sources.
"Identifying and quantifying planetary boundaries that must not be transgressed could help prevent human activities from causing unacceptable environmental change, argue Johan Rockström and colleagues."
Author Summary DNA methylation is a chemical modification of DNA present in many prokaryotic genomes. The best-known role of DNA methylation is as a component of restriction-modification systems. In these systems, restriction enzymes target foreign DNA for cleavage, while DNA methylation protects the host genome from destruction. Studies in a handful of organisms show that DNA methylation may also act independently of restriction systems and function in genome regulation. However, a lack of technologies has limited the study of DNA methylation to a small number of organisms, and the broader patterns and functions of DNA methylation remain unknown. Here we use SMRT-sequencing to determine the genome wide DNA methylation patterns of more than 200 diverse bacteria and archaea. We show that DNA methylation is pervasive and present in more than 90% of studied organisms. Analysis of this data enabled annotation of the specific DNA binding sites of more than 600 restriction systems, revealing their extraordinary diversity. Strikingly, we observed widespread DNA methylation in the absence of restriction systems. Analyses of these patterns reveal that they are conserved through evolution, and likely function in genome regulation. Thus DNA methylation may play a far wider function in prokaryotic genome biology than was previously supposed.
The newDemocracy Foundation is an independent, non-partisan research organisation aiming to identify improvements to our democratic process. We aim to replace the adversarial with the deliberative, and move out of the "continuous campaign" cycle. We appreciate the public endorsement of people who have lent their names to supporting the cause of non-partisan democratic reform and encourage you to consider the results of the research we publish.
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