IUBMB Journals

IUBMB Journal Highlights

We are excited to highlight new research from the IUBMB Journals: IUBMB Life, BioFactors, Biotechnology and Applied Biochemistry, and Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education.

Please also consider submitting your own research to the IUBMB Journals. You can expect to work with distinguished Editorial Board members and benefit from worldwide circulation and readership through our publishing partnership with Wiley. For more information about the journal and submissions, feel free to peruse the IUBMB journals website.

For now, please enjoy highlights of our recent content. Happy reading!



New Issue: Volume 73, Issue 9IUBMB life cover

Issue Highlights

SIRT6 through PI3K/Akt/mTOR Signaling Pathway to Enhance Radiosensitivity of Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer and Inhibit Tumor Progression

Lianggeng Xiong, Binxin Tan, Xiubing Lei, Biao Zhang, Wenting Li, Daimei Liu, Tian Xia

To explore the effect and mechanism of SIRT6 on radiosensitivity and tumor progression of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), SIRT6 expression was assessed in cell lines of patients with advanced NSCLC before and after radiotherapy. SIRT6 showed a low expression in tumor tissues and cell lines, while SIRT6 was significantly increased in tissues after radiation treatment. Overexpression of SIRT6 downregulated PI3K/Akt/mTOR signaling both before and after radiation, and inhibited proliferation and migration and promoted apoptosis in cell lines, and promoted the growth inhibition effect of radiation on NSCLC xenograft tumors. Cells with high SIRT6 expression after radiotherapy had lower proliferation and migration, and increased apoptosis. Therefore, SIRT6 inhibits the development of NSCLC tumors and promotes radiosensitivity by downregulating the activity of PI3K/Akt/mTOR signaling pathway.



Placenta-specific protein 1 promotes cell proliferation via the AKT/GSK-3β/cyclin D1 signaling pathway in gastric cancer

Dongyang Liu, Ke Shi, Mingshi Fu, Feng Chen

PLAC1 is highly expressed in gastric cancer, it is associated with poor prognosis and can promote gastric cancer cell proliferation through the AKT/GSK-3β/cyclin D1 signaling pathway. Moreover, AKT inhibitor attenuates the effect of PLAC1. Therefore, PLAC1 is a potential molecular marker for gastric cancer diagnosis, prognosis, and treatment.



CPEB1 enhances erastin-induced ferroptosis in gastric cancer cells by suppressing twist1 expression

Jing Wang, Tao Wang, Yang Zhang, Jiaqi Liu, Jie Song, Yanlong Han, Lihong Wang, Shuang Yang, Lili Zhu, Rui Geng, Weimin Li and Xiaoguang Yu

The induction of ferroptosis is considered a new strategy for cancer treatment. Low expression of cytoplasmic polyadenylation element binding protein 1 (CPEB1) has been linked to enhanced metastasis and angiogenesis of gastric cancer (GC). Gastric cancer cells with either overexpressed or silenced CPEB1 expression were treated with erastin, a classic ferroptosis inducer, which decreased the viability of four GC cell lines. CPEB1 overexpression reduced expression of twist1, and re-expression of twist1 in the presence of erastin impaired the effects of CPEB1 overexpression. In vivo, CPEB1 overexpression enhanced the growth-inhibition by erastin on GC xenografted tumors, further demonstrating that CPEB1 facilitates erastin-induced ferroptosis by inhibiting twist1.





Autophagy in Health and Disease IUBMB life cover

GUEST EDITOR:   Ruey-Hwa Chen (Institute of Biological Chemistry, Academia Sinica, Taiwan)
Manuscripts should be submitted by 10 September 2021
Expected issue publication will be February 2022

                                  Multicellular Microenvironment Effects on the Modulation of Cell Functions IUBMB life cover

GUEST EDITOR:   Xiangya Ding, Nanjing Medical University
Manuscripts should be submitted by 30 September 2021
Expected issue publication will be early 2022

                                  Proteinopathies in Neurodegenerative Diseases: Perspectives on Aging, Genetics, Protein Folding, and Cell Therapy IUBMB life cover

GUEST EDITORS:   David Blum (Lille Cedex), Cheng-ting Chien (Academia Sinica), Yung-Feng Liao (Academia Sinica)
Manuscripts should be submitted by 30 September 2021
Expected issue publication will be March 2022

                                  Cofactors Assembly and Function in Health and Disease IUBMB life cover

GUEST EDITORS:   Francesco Bonomi (University of Milan), Maria Barile (University of Bari Aldo Moro), Stefania Iametti (University of Milan)
Manuscripts should be submitted by 30 October 2021
Expected issue publication will be early 2022

                                  Extracellular Matrix: The Dynamic Structural and Functional Network in Health and Disease IUBMB life cover

GUEST EDITORS:   Nikos Karamanos (Univ. of Patras), Sylvie Ricard-Blum (Univ. of Lyon), Dimitris Kletsas (NCSR Demokritos, Athens)
Deadline extension for manuscript submission 28 February 2022
Expected issue publication will be March 2022


See all the new IUBMB Life Virtual Issues here


* We are pleased to announce that your contributions have helped IUBMB Life achieve an increased Impact Factor in 2020 of 3.885 from 3.244 in 2019. This means that the journal is now ranked 121 out of 195 in the category of Cell Biology and 147 out of 297 in the category of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, and has a 5-year Impact Factor of 4.022. 

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Biofactors coverNew Special Issue: Volume 47, Issue 4

Novel roles of Tsukushi in signaling pathways and multiple disease processes

Xia Deng, Yanyan Li, Chang Guo, Zhicong Zhao and Guoyue Yuan

Tsukushi (TSK), a newly discovered hepatokine, belongs to the leucine rich proteoglycans (SLRPs) family. Previous studies have shown that TSK, as an extracellular signal mediator, can regulate a variety of signal pathways, including BMP, Wnt, TGF-β, FGF, and MAPK. Recently, more and more studies have found that TSK is involved in many diseases, such as obesity, diabetes, nonalcoholic fatty liver disease and tumor. This study summarizes novel roles of TSK in signaling pathways and multiple disease processes, expands people’s understanding of the role and function of TSK gene, and provides a theoretical basis for further research.


The role of biofactors in the prevention and treatment of age-related diseases

Jan Frank, Klaus Kisters, Ovidiu Alin Stirban, Rima Obeid, Stefan Lorkowski, Maria Wallert, Sarah Egert, Maren C. Podszun, Gunter P. Eckert, Jacqueline A. Pettersen, Sascha Venturelli, Hans-Georg Classen and Jana Golombek

The dietary intake of essential and nonessential biofactors is a major determinant of human health, the age-related diseases and mortality in the older population. These biofactors can be a cost-effective strategy to prevent or even treat age-related diseases. Here we review examples including omega-3 fatty acids and dietary fiber for the prevention of CVD, vitamin E for the treatment of nonalcoholic steatohepatitis, vitamin D for the prevention of neurodegenerative diseases, thiamine and α-lipoic acid for the treatment of diabetic neuropathy, and the role of folate in cancer epigenetics. Furthermore, we propose here a definition of “biofactors” that will enable a harmonization and consistent use of the term in the scientific literature.

Biofactors definition


Secondary CoQ10 deficiency, bioenergetics unbalance in disease and aging

Plácido Navas, María V. Cascajo, María Alcázar-Fabra, Juan D. Hernández-Camacho, Ana Sánchez-Cuesta, Ana Belén Cortés Rodríguez, Manuel Ballesteros-Simarro, Antonio Arroyo-Luque, Juan Carlos Rodríguez-Aguilera, Daniel J. M. Fernández-Ayala, Gloria Brea-Calvo, Guillermo López-Lluch and Carlos Santos-Ocaña

Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) deficiency is a rare disease characterized by a decreased accumulation of CoQ10 in cell membranes and is the only mitochondrial disease with a successful therapy available, CoQ10 supplementation. Defects in synthesis caused by mutations in COQ generate primary CoQ10 deficiency. Mutations in genes that are not directly related to the synthesis machinery and cases without genetic origin cause secondary deficiency. This review shows the current state of secondary CoQ10 deficiency, which could be even more relevant than primary deficiency for clinical activity. The analysis covers the fundamental features of CoQ10 deficiency as well in-depth analysis of CoQ10 secondary deficiency to consider its origins, introduce a new way of classification, and include aging as a form of secondary deficiency.



Curcumin: A small molecule with big functionality against amyloid aggregation in neurodegenerative diseases and type 2 diabetes

Shabnam Radbakhsh, George E. Barreto, Abigail R. Bland and Amirhossein Sahebkar

Amyloidosis refers to the accumulation of insoluble proteins, called amyloids, in different tissues and organs, and is the pathological hallmark in several disorders. Curcumin is the active ingredient of turmeric with anti-amyloid effects that can interfere with self-assembly processes and reduce amyloid aggregation. The prevention of toxic oligomer formation, disruption of fibrillar aggregation, and suppression of expression of enzymes involved in amyloid generation such as BACE-1 and γ-secretase are the possible mechanisms by which curcumin attenuates amyloid-induced pathological features. This small molecule and its derivatives have also been approved for clinical trials conducted on amyloid diseases such as neurodegeneration and type 2 diabetes.



* We are pleased to announce that your contributions have helped BioFactors achieve an increased Impact Factor in 2020 of 6.113 from 4.734 in 2019. This means that the journal is now ranked 26 out of 145 in the category of Endocrinology & Metabolism and 64 out of 297 in the category of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, and has a 5-year Impact Factor of 5.365.

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Biotechnology and Applied Biochemistry

Volume 68, Issue 3Biotechnology and Applied Biochemistry

Issue Highlights

DNA–RNA complementation on silicon wafer for thyroid cancer determination

Subash C.B. Gopinath, Shijin Xuan

One of the current issues with thyroid tumor is early diagnosis as it makes the higher possibility of curing. This research was focused to detect and quantify the level of specific target sequence complementation of miR-222 with capture DNA sequence on interdigitated electrode (IDE) sensor. The aluminum electrode with the gap and finger sizes of 10 µm was fabricated on silicon wafer, further the surface was amine-functionalized for accommodating carboxylated-DNA probe. With DNA-target RNA complementation, the detection limit was attained to be 1 fM as estimated by a linear regression analysis [y = 1.5325x – 2.1171 R² = 0.9065] and the sensitivity was at the similar level. Current responses were higher by increasing the target RNA sequence concentrations. Control experiments with mismatched/noncomplementary sequences were failed to complement the capture DNA sequence immobilized on IDE, indicating the specific target validation. This research helps diagnosing and identifying the progression with thyroid tumor and miRNA being a potential “marker” in atypia diagnosis.

Downregulation of gap junctional intercellular communication and connexin 43 expression by bisphenol A in human granulosa cells

Ta-Chin Lin, Kai-Hung Wang, Kuo-Hsiang Chuang, An-Pei Kao, Tsung-Cheng Kuo

Gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) is the transfer of ions, metabolites, and second messengers between neighboring cells through intercellular junctions. Connexin 43 (Cx43) was found to be the type of gap junction protein responsible for human granulosa cells (GCs) and oocyte communication, which is required for folliculogenesis and oocyte maturation. Bisphenol A (BPA), an estrogenic-like endocrine-disrupting chemical, is one of the most widely produced chemicals around the world. There are reports that the chemical might cause endometrial tumorigenesis and several female reproductive disorders. This study demonstrated that cell culture medium, containing antioxidants (N-acetyl-l-cysteine and l-ascorbic acid-2-phosphate), was able to enhance the survival and self-renewal of GCs. In addition, we found that BPA at environmentally relevant concentration (10−7 M) reduced Cx43 expression and GJIC in GCs through estrogen receptor and mitogen-activated protein kinase pathways. The results of this study not only reveal the reproductive toxicity of BPA but also provide possible mechanisms by which BPA inhibited GJIC in GCs.


* We are pleased to announce that your contributions have helped Biotechnology and Applied Biochemistry achieve an increased Impact Factor in 2020 of 2.431 from 1.638 in 2019. This means that the journal is now ranked 229 out of 297 in the category of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology and 110 out of 159 in the category of Biotechnology & Applied Microbiology, and has a 5-year Impact Factor of 2.124.

Thank you for contributing to this success. Share your paper with your network and spread the word about your achievement!  


Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education

New Virtual Issue on Teaching in the Time of COVID-19Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education

Volume 49, Issue 4

Issue Highlights

Mock grant application roleplay as an alternative to lab-based activities in molecular biology

Many universities resort to online teaching due to COVID-19 pandemic. It is a challenging endeavor, especially in Molecular Biology courses that require lab access. Mock grant application roleplay is one alternative to lab-based activities. Students are engaged in three aspects: (i) targeted literature review, (ii) research proposal writing and (iii) 5-min project pitching. The design of this module is flexible and, other lab-based courses can adopt it. This module encourages undergraduate students to explore the lab techniques they learnt and concisely present their research proposal.

A guided-inquiry investigation of genetic variants using Oxford nanopore sequencing for an undergraduate molecular biology laboratory course

Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) has become an important tool in the biological sciences and has a growing number of applications across medical fields. Currently, few undergraduate programs provide training in the design and implementation of NGS applications. Here, we describe an inquiry-based laboratory exercise for a college-level molecular biology laboratory course that uses real-time MinION deep sequencing and bioinformatics to investigate characteristic genetic variants found in cancer cell-lines. The overall goal for students was to identify non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) cell-lines based on their unique genomic profiles. The units described in this laboratory highlight core principles in multiplex PCR primer design, real-time deep sequencing, and bioinformatics analysis for genetic variants. We found that the MinION device is an appropriate, feasible tool that provides a comprehensive, hands-on NGS experience for undergraduates. Student evaluations demonstrated increased confidence in using molecular techniques and enhanced understanding of NGS concepts. Overall, this exercise provides a pedagogical tool for incorporating NGS approaches in the teaching laboratory as way of enhancing students’ comprehension of genomic sequence analysis. Further, this NGS lab module can easily be added to a variety of lab-based courses to help undergraduate students learn current DNA sequencing methods with limited effort and cost.


* We are pleased to announce that your contributions have helped Biotechnology and Applied Biochemistry achieve an increased Impact Factor in 2020 of 1.160 from 0.924 in 2019. This means that the journal is now ranked 282 out of 297 in the category of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology and 35 out of 44 in the category of Education, Scientific Disciplines, and has a 5-year Impact Factor of 1.431.

Thank you for contributing to this success. Share your paper with your network and spread the word about your achievement!  


Did you know? Wiley and Jisc just signed an agreement that allows UK authors to publish Open Access in the IUBMB Journals at no cost to them.

Thanks to a partnership our publisher Wiley has signed with Jisc, certain UK institutions now have full access to journals published by Wiley, including the IUBMB Journals. Further, the partnership enables authors at participating UK institutions to publish open access at no cost to them in the IUBMB Journals. Payment of the associated Article Publication Charges (APC) would be covered via the partnership, and authors will not need to cover the APCs from their own pockets.

Wiley has also signed similar agreements with universities in Germany, the Netherlands, Austria, Norway, Hungary, Finland, Sweden, and with the US-based OhioLink And VIVA.

Submit your research to the IUBMB Journals today.

Molecular Aspects of Medicine

Molecular Aspects of Medicine cover

Volume 79, June 2021, 100892
Polysialylation and disease
by Chihiro Sato, Ken Kitajima


* We are pleased to announce the 2020 Impact Factor (published by Clarivate Analytics) of Molecular Aspects of Medicine has gone up from 9.577 to 14.235. This means that the journal is ranked 15 out of 298 in the category Biochemistry & Molecular Biology and 5 out of 140 in the category Medicine, Research & Experiments, with a 5-year IF of 12.301.

We wholeheartedly thank all the contributors for their hard work, dedication and support of the journal over the years!

Dr. Angelo Azzi, Editor-in-Chief, Molecular Aspects of Medicine
Ms. Valerie Teng-Broug, Sr. Publisher Elsevier