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Cells

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macrophages and heart cells

IT’S ELECTRIFYING  Macrophages (green) “plug in” to heart cells (light purple and pink), providing an electrical boost that helps the heart cells contract and pump blood, a study in mice finds.

3-D images of cells

VARIATIONS ON A CELL  Although these stem cells are all genetically identical, they can adopt a variety of shapes. Here, the cells’ membranes are cyan, and DNA is colored magenta.

phages

WEAPONS OF MASS EVOLUTION  Bacteria and archaea armed with CRISPR systems have been at war with viruses for eons. Here, hordes of viruses known as phages assault a bacterium to turn it into a virus-making factory.

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