Arthritis & Rheumatism, Volume 63,
November 2011 Abstract Supplement

Abstracts of the American College of
Rheumatology/Association of Rheumatology Health Professionals
Annual Scientific Meeting
Chicago, Illinois November 4-9, 2011.

MicroRNA Expression in Vault Particles.

Rowzee1,  Anne, Tandon1,  Mayank, Gallo1,  Alessia, Routsias2,  John, Tzioufas3,  Athanasios G., Alevizos4,  Ilias

NIDCR, Bethesda, MD
National University of Athens, Greece
School of Medicine, National University of Athens, Greece, Athens, Greece
NIDCR/ NIH #10 1N110, Bethesda, MD


Vault particles are among the largest ribonucleic complexes found in the cell, however, they remain largely uncharacterized. A single protein, major vault protein (MVP), comprises nearly 70% of the 13 MDa mass of this hollow, barrel-shaped organelle. The major components of vaults have been implicated in many basic cellular processes and disease mechanisms, including viral infections, but the function and contents of vaults remain unknown. Our primary interest in vault particles is centered on their ability to bind and sequester small RNAs. A 98 bp RNA sequence named VTRNA is housed within the interior of vaults and has similar characteristics to microRNA precursors. Consequently, the objective of this study was to detect and characterize any microRNAs present in vaults.


Existing cell-fractionation protocols were optimized to isolate intact vaults from murine salivary glands. Western immunoblot analysis of MVP was then used to demonstrate that we are able to obtain a sample enriched in MVP and likely to contain intact vault particles. Total RNA extracted from isolated vaults both with and without prior RNase treatment was then evaluated by Bioanalyzer, qPCR, and microarray.


Using these methods, specific microRNAs from within vaults were identified and demonstrated to be protected from RNase treatment.


Overall, we consider vaults to be an interesting organelle that is potentially important for regulation of microRNA processing and trafficking, or may function as a delivery vehicle for small nucleic acid sequences representing an additional mechanism of translational control.

To cite this abstract, please use the following information:
Rowzee, Anne, Tandon, Mayank, Gallo, Alessia, Routsias, John, Tzioufas, Athanasios G., Alevizos, Ilias; MicroRNA Expression in Vault Particles. [abstract]. Arthritis Rheum 2011;63 Suppl 10 :1937

Abstract Supplement

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