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Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences

In This Issue [This Week in PNAS]
Ocean acidification and coral skeletal density Porites corals are dominant reef builders on most Indo-Pacific Reefs. Coral reefs are among the most diverse ecosystems on Earth, and ocean acidification is considered a major threat to their future survival. However, field and laboratory studies examin...

Feedlot diet for Americans that results from a misspecified optimization algo...
White and Hall (1) suggest that removing animals from US agriculture would create a food supply incapable of supporting the United States population?s nutritional requirements and increase nutritional deficiencies compared with the current food system. However, their analysis suffers from an uncriti...

Cooperative breeding and the evolutionary coexistence of helper and nonhelper...
In some species individuals altruistically delay their chance of reproducing to help others raise their young. This is commonly referred to as cooperative breeding and is widespread across the animal kingdom, occurring in insects, crustaceans, fish, birds, and mammals, including humans (1, 2). This ...

Maturity of nearby faults influences seismic hazard from hydraulic fracturing...
Understanding the causes of human-induced earthquakes is paramount to reducing societal risk. We investigated five cases of seismicity associated with hydraulic fracturing (HF) in Ohio since 2013 that, because of their isolation from other injection activities, provide an ideal setting for studying ...

A big data analysis of the relationship between future thinking and decision-...
We use big data methods to investigate how decision-making might depend on future sightedness (that is, on how far into the future people?s thoughts about the future extend). In study 1, we establish a link between future thinking and decision-making at the population level in showing that US states...

Bacteriocyte cell death in the pea aphid/Buchnera symbiotic system [Evolution]
Symbiotic associations play a pivotal role in multicellular life by facilitating acquisition of new traits and expanding the ecological capabilities of organisms. In insects that are obligatorily dependent on intracellular bacterial symbionts, novel host cells (bacteriocytes) or organs (bacteriomes)...

Damaging de novo mutations diminish motor skills in children on the autism sp...
In individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), de novo mutations have previously been shown to be significantly correlated with lower IQ but not with the core characteristics of ASD: deficits in social communication and interaction and restricted interests and repetitive patterns of behavior. W...

Normal aging induces A1-like astrocyte reactivity [Neuroscience]
The decline of cognitive function occurs with aging, but the mechanisms responsible are unknown. Astrocytes instruct the formation, maturation, and elimination of synapses, and impairment of these functions has been implicated in many diseases. These findings raise the question of whether astrocyte ...

Diamond anvil cell behavior up to 4 Mbar [Applied Physical Sciences]
The diamond anvil cell (DAC) is considered one of the dominant devices to generate ultrahigh static pressure. The development of the DAC technique has enabled researchers to explore rich high-pressure science in the multimegabar pressure range. Here, we investigated the behavior of the DAC up to 400...

Identification and paleoclimatic significance of magnetite nanoparticles in s...
In the world-famous sediments of the Chinese Loess Plateau, fossil soils alternate with windblown dust layers to record monsoonal variations over the last ?3 My. The less-weathered, weakly magnetic dust layers reflect drier, colder glaciations. The fossil soils (paleosols) contain variable concentra...

Pressure-induced structural change in MgSiO3 glass at pressures near the Eart...
Knowledge of the structure and properties of silicate magma under extreme pressure plays an important role in understanding the nature and evolution of Earth?s deep interior. Here we report the structure of MgSiO3 glass, considered an analog of silicate melts, up to 111 GPa. The first (r1) and secon...

Hamilton's inclusive fitness maintains heritable altruism polymorphism throug...
How can altruism evolve or be maintained in a selfish world? Hamilton?s rule shows that the former process will occur when rb > c?the benefits to the recipients of an altruistic act b, weighted by the relatedness between the social partners r, exceed the costs to the altruists c?drives altruistic...

Divergent and parallel routes of biochemical adaptation in high-altitude pass...
When different species experience similar selection pressures, the probability of evolving similar adaptive solutions may be influenced by legacies of evolutionary history, such as lineage-specific changes in genetic background. Here we test for adaptive convergence in hemoglobin (Hb) function among...

Accelerated wound healing in mice by on-site production and delivery of CXCL1...
Impaired wound closure is a growing medical problem associated with metabolic diseases and aging. Immune cells play important roles in wound healing by following instructions from the microenvironment. Here, we developed a technology to bioengineer the wound microenvironment and enhance healing abil...

Identification of genetic risk factors in the Chinese population implicates a...
Alzheimer?s disease (AD) is a leading cause of mortality among the elderly. We performed a whole-genome sequencing study of AD in the Chinese population. In addition to the variants identified in or around the APOE locus (sentinel variant rs73052335, P = 1.44 10?14), two common variants, GCH1 (rs7...

Heritable aspects of biological motion perception and its covariation with au...
The ability to detect biological motion (BM) and decipher the meaning therein is essential to human survival and social interaction. However, at the individual level, we are not equally equipped with this ability. In particular, impaired BM perception and abnormal neural responses to BM have been ob...

Iterative random forests to discover predictive and stable high-order interac...
Genomics has revolutionized biology, enabling the interrogation of whole transcriptomes, genome-wide binding sites for proteins, and many other molecular processes. However, individual genomic assays measure elements that interact in vivo as components of larger molecular machines. Understanding how...

Climate vulnerability and resilience in the most valuable North American fish...
Managing natural resources in an era of increasing climate impacts requires accounting for the synergistic effects of climate, ecosystem changes, and harvesting on resource productivity. Coincident with recent exceptional warming of the northwest Atlantic Ocean and removal of large predatory fish, t...

An evolutionary perspective on nutrition and social decision making [Social S...
We were intrigued by findings reported by Strang et al. (1) that the balance of carbohydrate to protein in a breakfast preparation influenced subsequent human social decision making. Specifically, compared with a low-carbohydrate/high-protein breakfast, consumption of a high-carbohydrate/low-protein...

Conceptualizing degrees of theory of mind [Psychological and Cognitive Sciences]
Successful navigation of the social world requires making accurate inferences about the contents of other people?s minds, being able to represent in one?s own mind the thoughts, beliefs, and intentions of another. This ?theory of mind? (ToM) ability allows us to explain and predict others? behavior ...

Adaptive value of novel MHC immune gene variants [Evolution]
The major histocompatibility complex (MHC) is a core component of the vertebrate immune system and has puzzled immunologists, geneticists, and evolutionary biologists for more than half a century. The so-called classical MHC genes (in humans also called HLA) code for cell surface molecules that pres...

On the complex dynamics of savanna landscapes [Applied Mathematics]
Simple mathematical models can exhibit rich and complex behaviors. Prototypical examples of these drawn from biology and other disciplines have provided insights that extend well beyond the situations that inspired them. Here, we explore a set of simple, yet realistic, models for savanna?forest vege...

Effects of rapamycin on growth hormone receptor knockout mice [Developmental ...
It is well documented that inhibition of mTORC1 (defined by Raptor), a complex of mechanistic target of rapamycin (mTOR), extends life span, but less is known about the mechanisms by which mTORC2 (defined by Rictor) impacts longevity. Here, rapamycin (an inhibitor of mTOR) was used in GHR-KO (growth...

Farming the mitochondrial ancestor as a model of endosymbiotic establishment ...
The origin of mitochondria was a major evolutionary transition leading to eukaryotes, and is a hotly debated issue. It is unknown whether mitochondria were acquired early or late, and whether it was captured via phagocytosis or syntrophic integration. We present dynamical models to directly simulate...

Effects of the ecto-ATPase apyrase on microglial ramification and surveillanc...
Microglia, the brain?s innate immune cells, have highly motile processes which constantly survey the brain to detect infection, remove dying cells, and prune synapses during brain development. ATP released by tissue damage is known to attract microglial processes, but it is controversial whether an ...

Nature and evolution of incommensurate charge order in manganites visualized ...
Incommensurate charge order in hole-doped oxides is intertwined with exotic phenomena such as colossal magnetoresistance, high-temperature superconductivity, and electronic nematicity. Here, we map, at atomic resolution, the nature of incommensurate charge?lattice order in a manganite using scanning...

ATR-Chk1 activation mitigates replication stress caused by mismatch repair-de...
The mismatch repair pathway (MMR) is essential for removing DNA polymerase errors, thereby maintaining genomic stability. Loss of MMR function increases mutation frequency and is associated with tumorigenesis. However, how MMR is executed at active DNA replication forks is unclear. This has importan...

Inner Workings: How the butterfly got its spots (and why it matters) [Develop...
The colorful canvas of the butterfly wing is an exceptional example of evolutionary innovation and adaptation. Compared with their forebears, whose wings wore patterns of black, brown, and gray, the Lepidoptera (butterflies and moths) evolved a more varied palette of pigmentation. With the capacity ...

Immunogenetic novelty confers a selective advantage in host-pathogen coevolut...
The major histocompatibility complex (MHC) is crucial to the adaptive immune response of vertebrates and is among the most polymorphic gene families known. Its high diversity is usually attributed to selection imposed by fast-evolving pathogens. Pathogens are thought to evolve to escape recognition ...

Sirt4 is a mitochondrial regulator of metabolism and lifespan in Drosophila m...
Sirtuins are an evolutionarily conserved family of NAD+-dependent deacylases that control metabolism, stress response, genomic stability, and longevity. Here, we show the sole mitochondrial sirtuin in Drosophila melanogaster, Sirt4, regulates energy homeostasis and longevity. Sirt4 knockout flies ha...

Neuronal control of astrocytic respiration through a variant of the Crabtree ...
Aerobic glycolysis is a phenomenon that in the long term contributes to synaptic formation and growth, is reduced by normal aging, and correlates with amyloid beta deposition. Aerobic glycolysis starts within seconds of neural activity and it is not obvious why energetic efficiency should be comprom...

Child first language and adult second language are both tied to general-purpo...
Do the mechanisms underlying language in fact serve general-purpose functions that preexist this uniquely human capacity? To address this contentious and empirically challenging issue, we systematically tested the predictions of a well-studied neurocognitive theory of language motivated by evolution...

Automated monitoring of behavior reveals bursty interaction patterns and rapi...
Social networks mediate the spread of information and disease. The dynamics of spreading depends, among other factors, on the distribution of times between successive contacts in the network. Heavy-tailed (bursty) time distributions are characteristic of human communication networks, including face-...

Correction for Das, Unfounded assumptions in linking crop-damaging temperatur...
LETTER Correction for ?Unfounded assumptions in linking crop-damaging temperature and suicide in India,? by Saudamini Das, which was first published December 29, 2017; 10.1073/pnas.1715331115 (Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 115:E116). The editors note that, in the first paragraph, line 2, ?suicides during 1...

A neurochemical hypothesis for the origin of hominids [Anthropology]
It has always been difficult to account for the evolution of certain human characters such as language, empathy, and altruism via individual reproductive success. However, the striatum, a subcortical region originally thought to be exclusively motor, is now known to contribute to social behaviors an...

Evolutionary history of carbon monoxide dehydrogenase/acetyl-CoA synthase, on...
Carbon monoxide dehydrogenase/acetyl-CoA synthase (CODH/ACS) is a five-subunit enzyme complex responsible for the carbonyl branch of the Wood?Ljungdahl (WL) pathway, considered one of the most ancient metabolisms for anaerobic carbon fixation, but its origin and evolutionary history have been unclea...

Evolution of vertical and oblique transmission under fluctuating selection [E...
The evolution and maintenance of social learning, in competition with individual learning, under fluctuating selection have been well-studied in the theory of cultural evolution. Here, we study competition between vertical and oblique cultural transmission of a dichotomous phenotype under constant, ...

Intracellular Ca2+ stores control in vivo neuronal hyperactivity in a mouse m...
Neuronal hyperactivity is the emerging functional hallmark of Alzheimer?s disease (AD) in both humans and different mouse models, mediating an impairment of memory and cognition. The mechanisms underlying neuronal hyperactivity remain, however, elusive. In vivo Ca2+ imaging of somatic, dendritic, an...

Tau induces blood vessel abnormalities and angiogenesis-related gene expressi...
Mixed pathology, with both Alzheimer?s disease and vascular abnormalities, is the most common cause of clinical dementia in the elderly. While usually thought to be concurrent diseases, the fact that changes in cerebral blood flow are a prominent early and persistent alteration in Alzheimer?s diseas...

Precipitation formation from orographic cloud seeding [Earth, Atmospheric, an...
Throughout the western United States and other semiarid mountainous regions across the globe, water supplies are fed primarily through the melting of snowpack. Growing populations place higher demands on water, while warmer winters and earlier springs reduce its supply. Water managers are tantalized...

Aberration-corrected cryoimmersion light microscopy [Engineering]
Cryogenic fluorescent light microscopy of flash-frozen cells stands out by artifact-free fixation and very little photobleaching of the fluorophores used. To attain the highest level of resolution, aberration-free immersion objectives with accurately matched immersion media are required, but both do...

Solution structure of sperm lysin yields novel insights into molecular dynami...
Protein evolution is driven by the sum of different physiochemical and genetic processes that usually results in strong purifying selection to maintain biochemical functions. However, proteins that are part of systems under arms race dynamics often evolve at unparalleled rates that can produce atypi...

Transient visual pathway critical for normal development of primate grasping ...
An evolutionary hallmark of anthropoid primates, including humans, is the use of vision to guide precise manual movements. These behaviors are reliant on a specialized visual input to the posterior parietal cortex. Here, we show that normal primate reaching-and-grasping behavior depends critically o...