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Receptors Clin Investig. 2016;3(2). pii: e1310. Epub 2016 May 23.

Major vault protein in cardiac and smooth muscle.

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Department of Pharmacology and Physiology, Georgetown University Medical Center, Washington, DC 20057, USA.


Major vault protein (MVP) is the major component of the vault particle whose functions are not well understood. One proposed function of the vault is to serve as a mechanism of drug transport, which confers drug resistance in cancer cells. We show that MVP can be found in cardiac and smooth muscle. In human airway smooth muscle cells, knocking down MVP was found to cause cell death, suggesting that MVP serves as a cell survival factor. Further, our laboratory found that MVP is S-glutathionylated in response to ligand/receptor-mediated cell signaling. The S-glutathionylation of MVP appears to regulate protein-protein interactions between MVP and a protein called myosin heavy chain 9 (MYH9). Through MYH9 and Vsp34, MVP may form a complex with Beclin-1 that regulates autophagic cell death. In pulmonary vascular smooth muscle, proteasome inhibition promotes the ubiquitination of MVP, which may function as a mechanism of proteasome inhibition-mediated cell death. Investigating the functions and the regulatory mechanisms of MVP and vault particles is an exciting new area of research in cardiovascular/pulmonary pathophysiology.


cardiac muscle; heart; lung; major vault protein; smooth muscle; vault


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