Research ArticleCELL BIOLOGY

Ribosome-associated vesicles: A dynamic subcompartment of the endoplasmic reticulum in secretory cells

See allHide authors and affiliations

Science Advances  01 Apr 2020:
Vol. 6, no. 14, eaay9572
DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.aay9572


The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) is a highly dynamic network of membranes. Here, we combine live-cell microscopy with in situ cryo–electron tomography to directly visualize ER dynamics in several secretory cell types including pancreatic β-cells and neurons under near-native conditions. Using these imaging approaches, we identify a novel, mobile form of ER, ribosome-associated vesicles (RAVs), found primarily in the cell periphery, which is conserved across different cell types and species. We show that RAVs exist as distinct, highly dynamic structures separate from the intact ER reticular architecture that interact with mitochondria via direct intermembrane contacts. These findings describe a new ER subcompartment within cells.

This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution license, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

View Full Text

Stay Connected to Science Advances