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Plant Cell. 2019 Jan 31. pii: tpc.00872.2018. doi: 10.1105/tpc.18.00872. [Epub ahead of print]

Plant Extracellular Vesicles Contain Diverse Small RNA Species and Are Enriched in 10 to 17 Nucleotide "Tiny" RNAs.

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Donald Danforth Plant Science Center CITY: Sanit Louis United States Of America [US].
Indiana University CITY: Bloomington STATE: Indiana United States Of America [US].
Donald Danforth Plant Science Center CITY: St. Louis STATE: Missouri POSTAL_CODE: 63132 United States Of America [US].
Indiana University CITY: Bloomington STATE: Indiana POSTAL_CODE: 47405-7107 United States Of America [US]


Small RNAs (sRNAs) that are 21 to 24 nucleotides (nt) in length are found in most eukaryotic organisms and regulate numerous biological functions, including transposon silencing, development, reproduction, and stress responses, typically via control of the stability and/or translation of target mRNAs. Major classes of sRNAs in plants include microRNAs (miRNAs) and small interfering RNAs (siRNAs); sRNAs are known to travel as a silencing signal from cell to cell, root to shoot, and even between host and pathogen. In mammals, sRNAs are transported inside extracellular vesicles (EVs), which are mobile lipid compartments that participate in intercellular communication. In addition to sRNAs, EVs carry proteins, lipids, metabolites, and potentially other types of nucleic acids. Here we report that plant EVs also contain diverse species of sRNA. We found that specific miRNAs and siRNAs are preferentially loaded into plant EVs. We also report a previously overlooked class of "tiny RNAs" (10 to 17 nt) that are highly enriched in EVs. This new RNA category of unknown function has a broad and very diverse genome origin and might correspond to degradation products.

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