To celebrate 12 months of cutting-edge science we’ve decided to round up our PLOS Biology cover stars to the tune of ‘The 12 Days of Christmas’ .
Sending warm wishes to all of our authors, editors, reviewers, and readers. Merry Christmas to all those celebrating, and Happy Holidays to everyone else!
See our full 2019 issue (December pending) here!
How does bladderwort make its amazing cup-shaped traps? The authors use 3D imaging and computational modeling to show that they arise using the same rules that guide the formation of leaves.
Choanoflagellates are our closest single-celled relatives; these authors examine the differences between single-celled and multicellular species of choanoflagellate to probe the origins of complex animals.
By examining the genome sequences of three species of Heliconius butterfly, the researchers were able to identify the genetic basis of barriers to interbreeding.
The authors find that when a type of pathogenic bacteria are starved, they save energy by ejecting their flagella and plugging the resulting hole to avoid leakage.
5 Blue Sharks
This study used data from baited video traps to show that distant reefs and seamounts are the last refuge of large marine predators like sharks.
Fluorescently labelled Helicobacter pylori allow the authors to see how these ulcer-causing bacteria compete with each other to colonise gastric glands.
The authors study pyramidal neurons in the hippocampus to establish how they manage to juggle the relative strengths of multiple incoming and outgoing synapses.
By looking at the excretory mechanisms in sea anemones and two exotic xenacoelomorphs, the authors try to reconstruct the ancestor of the kidney.
9 Bone marrow placentas
The researchers find that pregnancy mobilises cells from the bone marrow and recruits them to form the placenta.
This study reveals that the size of beetles’ jaw weapons is determined by their diet, mediated by an insulin-related peptide.
This study identifies a crucial protein specifically found in the eggshell of mosquitoes, which may represent a useful target for the next generation of insecticides.
The authors create a comprehensive and time-calibrated family tree of nearly 6,000 species of living mammals.