Table of Contents: October 2016

This study by Alem et al. shows that bumblebees (Bombus terrestris) can be trained to pull strings to obtain a reward, can learn to string-pull through observation, and can culturally spread string-pulling throughout a colony. The image shows a bumblebee pulling on a string to retrieve a blue plastic “flower” laden with sugar water. The “flower” lies under a sheet of Plexiglas, and is attached to a string that protrudes from the edge of this screen. In order to expose the “flower” and reap their sugary reward, the bees must learn to pull the string. The study shows that bees are able to learn this skill, whether via a gradual training program, or (rarely) spontaneously. Once learned, the bees can transmit the string-pulling technique socially to their colony mates.

Image Credit: Olli Loukola


Diversity Takes Shape: Understanding the Mechanistic and Adaptive Basis of Bacterial Morphology

David T. Kysela, Amelia M. Randich, Paul D. Caccamo, Yves V. Brun

Human Germline Mutation and the Erratic Evolutionary Clock

Priya Moorjani, Ziyue Gao, Molly Przeworski

Research Articles

Large Variations in HIV-1 Viral Load Explained by Shifting-Mosaic Metapopulation Dynamics

Katrina A. Lythgoe, François Blanquart, Lorenzo Pellis, Christophe Fraser

Selection Transforms the Landscape of Genetic Variation Interacting with Hsp90

Kerry A. Geiler-Samerotte, Yuan O. Zhu, Benjamin E. Goulet, David W. Hall, Mark L. Siegal

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Visual BOLD Response in Late Blind Subjects with Argus II Retinal Prosthesis

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Brain Connectivity Predicts Placebo Response across Chronic Pain Clinical Trials

Pascal Tétreault, Ali Mansour, Etienne Vachon-Presseau, Thomas J. Schnitzer, A. Vania Apkarian, Marwan N. Baliki

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A Neural Code That Is Isometric to Vocal Output and Correlates with Its Sensory Consequences

Alexei L. Vyssotski, Anna E. Stepien, Georg B. Keller, Richard H. R. Hahnloser

STAT2 Is a Pervasive Cytokine Regulator due to Its Inhibition of STAT1 in Multiple Signaling Pathways

Johnathan Ho, Christin Pelzel, Andreas Begitt, Maureen Mee, Hany M. Elsheikha, David J. Scott, Uwe Vinkemeier

snRNA 3′ End Processing by a CPSF73-Containing Complex Essential for Development in Arabidopsis

Yunfeng Liu, Shengjun Li, Yuan Chen, Athen N. Kimberlin, Edgar B. Cahoon, Bin Yu