Multivesicular bodies

Definition

Multivesicular bodies (MVBs) are a specialised subset of endosomes that contain membrane-bound intraluminal vesicles. These vesicles form by budding into the lumen of the MVB. The content of MVBs can be degraded, via fusion with lysosomes, or released into the extracellular space, via fusion with the plasma membrane.

Latest Research and Reviews

News and Comment

  • News and Views |

    Exosomes have a growing inventory of functions, but the mechanism of protein sorting into exosomes has been unclear. Now, a signal sequence first described in viral budding provides just such a cargo sorting mechanism, revealing closer-than-expected parallelism between exosome biogenesis and the ESCRT-dependent endolysosomal pathway.

    • James H. Hurley
    •  & Greg Odorizzi
    Nature Cell Biology 14, 654–655
  • News and Views |

    Exosomes are endosome-derived membrane vesicles that are key for intercellular communication in the immune system and elsewhere. Rab27A and Rab27B GTPases and two of their cognate effector proteins seem to be needed to drive the physiologically important exosome-release process in certain cell types.

    • Suzanne R. Pfeffer
  • News and Views |

    Formation of multivesicular bodies (MVBs) from endosomes or budding of enveloped virus such as HIV-I from the plasma membrane require the ESCRT (endosomal sorting complex required for transport) complexes. An in vitro reconstitution assay unambiguously identifies the function of each ESCRT complex in the sequential events of MVB morphogenesis, from cargo clustering and membrane bud formation to sequestration of cargoes in vesicles, and fission of the vesicles into the lumen of the endosome.

    • Patricia Bassereau
    Nature Cell Biology 12, 422–423