MiRNAs in platelet-poor blood plasma and purified RNA are highly stable: A confirmatory study

Dillon C. Muth, Bonita H. Powell, Zezhou Zhao, Kenneth W. Witwer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Objective: We wished to re-assess the relative stability of microRNAs (miRNAs) as compared with other RNA molecules, which has been confirmed in many contexts. When bound to Argonaute proteins, miRNAs are protected from degradation, even when released into the extracellular space in ribonucleoprotein complexes, and with or without the protection of membranes in extracellular vesicles. Purified miRNAs also appear to present less of a target for degradation than other RNAs. Although miRNAs are by no means immune to degradation, biological samples subjected to prolonged incubation at room temperature, multiple freeze/thaws, or collection in the presence of inhibitors like heparin, can typically be remediated or used directly for miRNA measurements. Results: Here, we provide additional confirmation of early, well validated findings on miRNA stability and detectability. Our data also suggest that inadequate depletion of platelets from plasma may explain the occasional report that freeze-thaw cycles can adversely affect plasma miRNA levels. Overall, the repeated observation of miRNA stability is again confirmed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number273
JournalBMC Research Notes
Issue number1
StatePublished - May 4 2018


  • Blood processing
  • Freeze/thaw
  • Plasma
  • RNA isolation
  • Stability
  • microRNA
  • qPCR

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)


Dive into the research topics of 'MiRNAs in platelet-poor blood plasma and purified RNA are highly stable: A confirmatory study'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this