Characterization of a mumps virus nucleocapsidlike particle

J Virol. 2009 Nov;83(21):11402-6. doi: 10.1128/JVI.00504-09. Epub 2009 Aug 19.


The nucleocapsid protein (NP) of mumps virus (MuV), a paramyxovirus, was coexpressed with the phosphoprotein (P) in Escherichia coli. The NP and P proteins form a soluble complex containing RNA. Under a transmission electron microscope, the NP-RNA complex appears as a nucleocapsidlike ring that has a diameter of approximately 20 nm with 13 subunits. There is a piece of single-stranded RNA with a length of 78 nucleotides in the NP-RNA ring. Shorter RNA pieces are also visible. The MuV NP protein may provide weaker protection of the RNA than the NP protein of some other negative-strand RNA viruses, reflecting the degree of NP protein association.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Microscopy, Electron, Transmission
  • Multiprotein Complexes
  • Mumps virus / metabolism*
  • Mumps virus / ultrastructure
  • Nucleocapsid Proteins / genetics
  • Nucleocapsid Proteins / metabolism*
  • Nucleocapsid Proteins / ultrastructure
  • Nucleocapsid* / metabolism
  • Nucleocapsid* / ultrastructure
  • Particle Size
  • Phosphoproteins / genetics
  • Phosphoproteins / metabolism*
  • Phosphoproteins / ultrastructure
  • RNA, Viral / metabolism
  • RNA, Viral / ultrastructure
  • Virion* / metabolism
  • Virion* / ultrastructure


  • Multiprotein Complexes
  • Nucleocapsid Proteins
  • Phosphoproteins
  • RNA, Viral