Although the cytoskeleton is known to play an important role in determining cell, and therefore organ, shape, how components of the cytoskeleton are reorganised during tube formation is unclear. Katja Röper’s group has identified a mechanism behind this.
Membrane remodelling and repair are essential for all cells. Buzz Baum’s group have shown that bacterial proteins Vipp1 and PspA are members of a family of membrane-remodelling proteins once thought to be exclusive to eukaryotes.
Jason Chin’s group, in our PNAC Division, has created cells with a synthetic genome and instructed them to make novel polymers from artificial building blocks for the first time. These new bacteria have also proved resistant to viral infections.
AMPA receptors mediate fast excitatory signal transmission and are created from combinations of subunits in a tissue-specific manner. Ingo Greger’s group provides the first visualisations of a hippocampal AMPA receptor involved in memory formation, with two auxiliary subunits.
Ubiquitylation is a process that marks cell-invading pathogens and non-functional organelles for autophagy. Felix Randow’s group has shown that RNF213 catalyses the ubiquitylation of LPS on invading bacteria. This is the first example for ubiquitylation of a non-protein substrate.
Andres Floto’s group has defined the necessary steps for M. abscessus bacteria to evolve into a human pathogen, suggesting the importance of identifying and treating infections quickly, before more virulent strains can arise.