The Editorial Board of Molecular Biology of the Cell has highlighted the following articles from the June 2016 issues. From among the many fine articles in the journal, the Board selects for these Highlights articles that are of broad interest and significantly advance knowledge or provide new concepts or approaches that extend our understanding.

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Actin–microtubule interactions have been postulated to play an essential role in the formation of the preprophase band (PPB) of microtubules, which defines the future plane of cell wall deposition in plants. However, little is known about how actin controls microtubule organization during morphogenesis. Electron tomography data presented by Takeuchi et al. (Mol. Biol. Cell 27, 1809–1820) demonstrate that single microfilaments form bridge-like connections between microtubules during the early stages of PPB formation, thereby initiating and subsequently mediating the narrowing of the PPB microtubule bands. The upper images show an electron tomography slice image (left) and a related tomography model (right) of microtubules (thick magenta lines) and microfilaments (thin yellow lines) of a PPB in an onion cotyledon epidermal cell. The lower images illustrate a microfilament that forms a bridge between two microtubules. The flared end of the upper microtubule indicates that it is in a depolymerizing mode. (Image: Miyuki Takeuchi, University of Tokyo; L. Andrew Staehelin, University of Colorado; Yoshinobu Mineyuki, University of Hyogo)

NFκB is a central regulator of protein quality control in response to protein aggregation stresses via autophagy modulation
Mathieu Nivon, Loïc Fort, Pascale Muller, Emma Richet, Stéphanie Simon, Baptiste Guey, Maëlenn Fournier, André-Patrick Arrigo, Claudio Hetz, Julie D. Atkin, and Carole Kretz-Remy
NFκB is a master regulator of protein quality control. It helps the cells to survive proteotoxicity by modulating autophagy via up-regulation of BAG3 and HspB8 expression, a molecular mechanism relevant to protein conformational diseases.
Mol. Biol. Cell 27 (11), 1712–1727

HIPK family kinases bind and regulate the function of the CCR4-NOT complex
Alfonso Rodriguez-Gil, Olesja Ritter, Juliane Hornung, Hilda Stekman, Marcus Krüger, Thomas Braun, Elisabeth Kremmer, Michael Kracht, and M. Lienhard Schmitz
Down-regulation of the HIPK interactor CNOT2 leads to reduced HIPK2 protein levels, identifying the CCR4-NOT complex as a new regulator of HIPK2 abundance. Functional assays reveal that HIPK2 and HIPK1 restrict CNOT2-dependent mRNA decay, thus extending the regulatory potential of these kinases to the level of posttranscriptional gene regulation.
Mol. Biol. Cell 27 (12), 1969–1980

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ASCB Newsletter Staff