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The best in science news, commentary, and research
The United Nations (UN) designated 2014 as the International Year of Family Farming, recognizing that an estimated 500 million family farms, involving over 2 billion people, play a key role in food production and consumption worldwide. It is thus an opportune time to encourage a shift in tackling global hunger—from a “food security” focus to an agenda that promotes “nutrition security” instead. The drive to reduce hunger in the world has largely relied on crops such as wheat and rice that provide calories. But an increase in calories alone is not good enough. Improved diets and good health require bolstering nutrition. Author: M. S. Swaminathan

A roundup of weekly science policy and related news.

Remission is seen as a more realistic goal. Author: Jon Cohen

Studies suggest that atoll islands will rise in step with a rising sea. Author: Christopher Pala

Stanford researchers unable to replicate findings linking immune response to sleep disorder. Author: Emily Underwood

Lacking vital medical supplies, doctors struggle to treat resurgent diseases. Author: Lizzie Wade

Green groups criticize current adviser—and her office. Author: Kai Kupferschmidt

New industry-sponsored study rules out any link between Italian earthquakes and oil production. Author: Edwin Cartlidge

Europe's Rosetta spacecraft is about to orbit and then land on one of the solar system's most mysterious objects. Author: Eric Hand

The most daring moment of the Rosetta mission will come when mission leaders plan to drop the Philae lander to the surface of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. Author: Eric Hand

More capable than once thought, the cellular structure known as the nucleolus may be a target for treating diseases. Author: Mitch Leslie

Sustained size reduction was essential for the origin of birds and avian flight [Also see Report by Lee et al.] Author: Michael J. Benton

Diamond-based quantum teleportation works every time [Also see Research Article by Pfaff et al.] Authors: Mete Atatüre, John J. L. Morton

DNA damage in ancient genomes may provide insight into past regulatory changes in humans and other species Authors: Ludovic Orlando, Eske Willerslev

Persistent pain changes a neural circuit and reduces willingness to work for food [Also see Research Article by Schwartz et al.] Author: Howard L. Fields

Pulsations from young stars provide a new chronometer for stellar evolution [Also see Report by Zwintzet al.] Authors: Steven Stahler, Francesco Palla

A Turing network controls the periodic pattern of fingers and toes during development [Also see Report by Raspopovicet al.] Authors: Aimée Zuniga, Rolf Zeller

Cellular signals during helminth infections can skew the immune response to favor viral spreading [Also see Reports by Reese et al. and Osborneet al.] Authors: Rick M Maizels, William C Gause

Where you manufacture changes what you get Author: Erica R. H. Fuchs

Authors: Stefano Golinelli, Luc Henry

Author: Brian C. Keegan

A listing of books received at Science during the week ending 25 July 2014.

Authors: Yang Gao, Jinguo Liu

Author: David E. Meyer

Author: T. R. Vidyasagar

Author: B. Boets

Nielsen et al. (Reports, 28 June 2013, p. 1577) characterized their RNA polymerase III (Pol III) preparation and concluded that it requires an RNA hairpin/duplex structure for terminating transcription. We could not corroborate their findings using bona fide Pol III from two laboratory sources. We show that Pol III efficiently terminates transcription in the absence of a hairpin/duplex in vitro and in vivo. Authors: Aneeshkumar G. Arimbasseri, George A. Kassavetis, Richard J. Maraia

Arimbasseri et al., in their Comment, suggest that to terminate transcription in vivo, RNA polymerase III uses a mechanism other than hairpin-dependent termination and that properties of purified polymerase may depend on preparation procedure. Evidence suggests that our preparation is indeed different from that of other methods. Our new data suggest that, apart from hairpin-dependent termination, one or more “fail-safe” termination mechanisms may exist in the cell. Authors: Soren Nielsen, Nikolay Zenkin

How do fingers know where to grow? | Turning large dinosaurs into small birds | Parasites make it hard to fight viruses | A neuropeptide kills patient's motivation | Converting CO2 into methanol by catalysis | Toward quantum teleportation on demand | Preventing drug resistance in breast cancer | New tools for sorting good and bad fat cells | Gamma-ray novas may be garden variety | A central player in brain computation | A macroscopic view of cultural history | A layered approach improves solar cells | Hitchhiking through the tumor genome | A not-so-random integration for HIV | A finger on the pulse of young stars | Ancient patterns reveal species divergence

How plants survive (salt) stress | Developing a judgment of confidence | The long and short of hair growth | Promoting evidence-based teaching | Electron tunneling or flickering resonance? | Ship strikes threaten blue whale numbers | How to make a not-so-painful ulcer | Ample explanation for seismic variation

The success story of fast-spiking, parvalbumin-positive (PV+) GABAergic interneurons (GABA, γ-aminobutyric acid) in the mammalian central nervous system is noteworthy. In 1995, the properties of these interneurons were completely unknown. Twenty years later, thanks to the massive use of subcellular patch-clamp techniques, simultaneous multiple-cell recording, optogenetics, in vivo measurements, and computational approaches, our knowledge about PV+ interneurons became more extensive than for several types of pyramidal neurons. These findings have implications beyond the “small world” of basic research on GABAergic cells. For example, the results provide a first proof of principle that neuroscientists might be able to close the gaps between the molecular, cellular, network, and behavioral levels, representing one of the main challenges at the present time. Furthermore, the results may form the basis for PV+ interneurons as therapeutic targets for brain disease in the future. However, much needs to be learned about the basic function of these interneurons before clinical neuroscientists will be able to use PV+ interneurons for therapeutic purposes. Authors: Hua Hu, Jian Gan, Peter Jonas

Tumor genomes are peppered with mobile repeat sequences that carry along adjacent DNA when they insert into new genomic sites. Authors: Jose M. C. Tubio, Yilong Li, Young Seok Ju, Inigo Martincorena, Susanna L. Cooke, Marta Tojo, Gunes Gundem, Christodoulos P. Pipinikas, Jorge Zamora, Keiran Raine, Andrew Menzies, Pablo Roman-Garcia, Anthony Fullam, Moritz Gerstung, Adam Shlien, Patrick S. Tarpey, Elli Papaemmanuil, Stian Knappskog, Peter Van Loo, Manasa Ramakrishna, Helen R. Davies, John Marshall, David C. Wedge, Jon W. Teague, Adam P. Butler, Serena Nik-Zainal, Ludmil Alexandrov, Sam Behjati, Lucy R. Yates, Niccolo Bolli, Laura Mudie, Claire Hardy, Sancha Martin, Stuart McLaren, Sarah O’Meara, Elizabeth Anderson, Mark Maddison, Stephen Gamble, , , , Christopher Foster, Anne Y. Warren, Hayley Whitaker, Daniel Brewer, Rosalind Eeles, Colin Cooper, David Neal, Andy G. Lynch, Tapio Visakorpi, William B. Isaacs, Laura van't Veer, Carlos Caldas, Christine Desmedt, Christos Sotiriou, Sam Aparicio, John A. Foekens, Jórunn Erla Eyfjörd, Sunil R. Lakhani, Gilles Thomas, Ola Myklebost, Paul N. Span, Anne-Lise Børresen-Dale, Andrea L. Richardson, Marc Van de Vijver, Anne Vincent-Salomon, Gert G. Van den Eynden, Adrienne M. Flanagan, P. Andrew Futreal, Sam M. Janes, G. Steven Bova, Michael R. Stratton, Ultan McDermott, Peter J. Campbell

A quantum state can now be teleported unconditionally between diamond defects 3 meters apart. [Also see Perspective by Atatüre and Morton] Authors: W. Pfaff, B. J. Hensen, H. Bernien, S. B. van Dam, M. S. Blok, T. H. Taminiau, M. J. Tiggelman, R. N. Schouten, M. Markham, D. J. Twitchen, R. Hanson

The effort mice are willing to put into obtaining a reward is decreased in inflammatory and neuropathic models of pain. [Also see Perspective by Fields] Authors: Neil Schwartz, Paul Temkin, Sandra Jurado, Byung Kook Lim, Boris D. Heifets, Jai S. Polepalli, Robert C. Malenka

Optimizing the growth conditions of the perovskite layer and interlayer carrier transport boosts solar cell efficiency. Authors: Huanping Zhou, Qi Chen, Gang Li, Song Luo, Tze-bing Song, Hsin-Sheng Duan, Ziruo Hong, Jingbi You, Yongsheng Liu, Yang Yang

Synergy at ametal-oxide interface generates highly active catalysts for carbon dioxide hydrogenation to methanol. Authors: Jesús Graciani, Kumudu Mudiyanselage, Fang Xu, Ashleigh E. Baber, Jaime Evans, Sanjaya D. Senanayake, Darío J. Stacchiola, Ping Liu, Jan Hrbek, Javier Fernández Sanz, José A. Rodriguez

Pulsation measurements of stars not yet undergoing nuclear burning confirm a predicted correlation with evolutionary status. [Also see Perspective by Stahler and Palla] Authors: K. Zwintz, L. Fossati, T. Ryabchikova, D. Guenther, C. Aerts, T. G. Barnes, N. Themeßl, D. Lorenz, C. Cameron, R. Kuschnig, S. Pollack-Drs, E. Moravveji, A. Baglin, J. M. Matthews, A. F. J. Moffat, E. Poretti, M. Rainer, S. M. Rucinski, D. Sasselov, W. W. Weiss

Three classical novae exhibit unexpected high-energy particle acceleration and may represent the norm for that object class. Author:

Birth and death records of notable individuals reveal a picture of Western cultural history over two millennia. Authors: Maximilian Schich, Chaoming Song, Yong-Yeol Ahn, Alexander Mirsky, Mauro Martino, Albert-László Barabási, Dirk Helbing

Birds evolved from their dinosaurian ancestors through a period characterized by sustained and repeated decreases in size. [Also see Perspective by Benton] Authors: Michael S. Y. Lee, Andrea Cau, Darren Naish, Gareth J. Dyke

Modeling and experiments reveal how limb digits are patterned by three components. [Also see Perspective by Zuniga and Zeller] Authors: J. Raspopovic, L. Marcon, L. Russo, J. Sharpe

The site of HIV integration may drive cell proliferation and influence the size of the viral reservoir. Authors: Thor A. Wagner, Sherry McLaughlin, Kavita Garg, Charles Y. K. Cheung, Brendan B. Larsen, Sheila Styrchak, Hannah C. Huang, Paul T. Edlefsen, James I. Mullins, Lisa M. Frenkel

Coinfection with intestinal parasites leads to altered antiviral immunity in mice. Authors: T. A. Reese, B. S. Wakeman, H. S. Choi, M. M. Hufford, S. C. Huang, X. Zhang, M. D. Buck, A. Jezewski, A. Kambal, C. Y. Liu, G. Goel, P. J. Murray, R. J. Xavier, M. H. Kaplan, R. Renne, S. H. Speck, M. N. Artyomov, E. J. Pearce, H. W. Virgin

Coinfection with intestinal parasites leads to altered antiviral immunity in mice. [Also see Perspective by Maizels and Gause] Authors: Lisa C. Osborne, Laurel A. Monticelli, Timothy J. Nice, Tara E. Sutherland, Mark C. Siracusa, Matthew R. Hepworth, Vesselin T. Tomov, Dmytro Kobuley, Sara V. Tran, Kyle Bittinger, Aubrey G. Bailey, Alice L. Laughlin, Jean-Luc Boucher, E. John Wherry, Frederic D. Bushman, Judith E. Allen, Herbert W. Virgin, David Artis

A weekly roundup of information on newly offered instrumentation, apparatus, and laboratory materials of potential interest to researchers.

On this week's show: Novae as a source of gamma rays and a roundup of stories from our daily news site.

Author: Carrie Arnold