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Special Issue "Focus on Extracellular Vesicles"

A special issue of International Journal of Molecular Sciences (ISSN 1422-0067). This special issue belongs to the section "Biochemistry, Molecular and Cellular Biology".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 June 2016)

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Dr. Suresh Mathivanan

Faculty of Science, Technology and Engineering, School of Molecular Sciences, Department of Biochemistry, La Trobe Institute for Molecular Science, LIMS1, Melbourne (Bundoora), Australia
Website | E-Mail
Interests: extracellular vesicles; microvesicles; intercellular communication; signaling; cancer; exosomes; ectosomes
Guest Editor
Dr. Gregor Drummen

Cellular Stress and Ageing Program, Bionanoscience and Bioimaging Program, BNS, 33647 Bielefeld, Germany
E-Mail
Interests: quantum dots; bionanotechnology; two-photon fluorescence imaging; cellular imaging; fluorescence microscopy; cancer; cell signaling; oxidative stress; lipids and biomembranes; lipid peroxidation; antioxidants; renal pathobiology

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Within the past decade, extracellular vesicles have not only emerged as important mediators of intercellular communication, but also their pathophysiological roles in diseases, such as cancer and infectious and neurodegenerative diseases, are increasingly being recognized. Extracellular vesicles are a heterogeneous group of lipidic structures ranging from 30–50,000 nm in size, and can roughly be subdivided into apoptotic bodies, ectosomes, and exosomes. Microvesicles have been isolated from tissues and bodily fluids, including blood, urine and cerebrospinal fluid, and contain a.o., proteins, RNA and DNA. After the discovery of post-translational modification, DNA methylation, and the interference with protein synthesis by microRNAs, exosomal transport of genetic material represents yet another regulatory and signaling mechanism in normal and pathobiological processes, apart from classical gene expression. Furthermore, these naturally occurring vesicles hold great promise as targets for combating disease, and as novel regenerative therapeutics and drug carriers.

This Special Issue of IJMS kicks off with a series of reviews that jointly provide a comprehensive overview of this exciting and emerging field of life sciences. The current Special Issue is open to submission of previously unpublished experimental, theoretical, prospective, historical, and review papers on the following and related topics:

  • Extracellular vesicle physiology
  • Extracellular vesicle composition
  • Extracellular vesicle biogenesis
  • Extracellular vesicle–disease relationship
  • Extracellular vesicles and stem cells
  • Extracellular vesicles as therapeutics

Dr. Suresh Mathivanan
Dr. Gregor Drummen
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Molecular Sciences is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1800 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


Keywords

  • exosomes
  • ectosomes
  • apoptotic bodies
  • large oncosomes
  • vesicles
  • lipids
  • extracellular trafficking
  • intercellular communication
  • cancer
  • neurodegeneration
  • drug delivery
  • stem cell
  • regenerative therapeutics

Published Papers (15 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessCommunication Inflammaging and Frailty Status Do Not Result in an Increased Extracellular Vesicle Concentration in Circulation
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(7), 1168; doi:10.3390/ijms17071168
Received: 16 May 2016 / Revised: 4 July 2016 / Accepted: 13 July 2016 / Published: 20 July 2016
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (959 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
In the last decades extracellular vesicles (EVs) have emerged as key players for intercellular communication. In the case of inflammation, several studies have reported that EV levels are increased in circulation during inflammatory episodes. Based on this, we investigated whether aging results in
[...] Read more.
In the last decades extracellular vesicles (EVs) have emerged as key players for intercellular communication. In the case of inflammation, several studies have reported that EV levels are increased in circulation during inflammatory episodes. Based on this, we investigated whether aging results in elevated EV number, as a basal proinflammatory status termed “inflammaging” has been described in aged individuals. Moreover, we also hypothesized that frailty and dependence conditions of the elderly could affect EV concentration in plasma. Results showed that inflammaging, frailty or dependence status do not result in EV increase, at least in the total number of EVs in circulation. These results open a new perspective for investigating the role of EVs in human aging and in the inflammaging process. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Focus on Extracellular Vesicles)
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Review

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Open AccessReview Exosomes as miRNA Carriers: Formation–Function–Future
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(12), 2028; doi:10.3390/ijms17122028
Received: 9 August 2016 / Revised: 25 November 2016 / Accepted: 30 November 2016 / Published: 2 December 2016
Cited by 7 | PDF Full-text (725 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Exosomes, which are one of the smallest extracellular vesicles released from cells, have been shown to carry different nucleic acids, including microRNAs (miRNAs). miRNAs significantly regulate cell growth and metabolism by posttranscriptional inhibition of gene expression. The rapidly changing understanding of exosomes’ formation
[...] Read more.
Exosomes, which are one of the smallest extracellular vesicles released from cells, have been shown to carry different nucleic acids, including microRNAs (miRNAs). miRNAs significantly regulate cell growth and metabolism by posttranscriptional inhibition of gene expression. The rapidly changing understanding of exosomes’ formation and function in delivering miRNAs from cell to cell has prompted us to review current knowledge in exosomal miRNA secretion mechanisms as well as possible therapeutic applications for personalized medicine. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Focus on Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessReview Extracellular Vesicles in Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(11), 1801; doi:10.3390/ijms17111801
Received: 17 September 2016 / Revised: 19 October 2016 / Accepted: 20 October 2016 / Published: 27 October 2016
Cited by 5 | PDF Full-text (1108 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is characterized by the progression of irreversible airflow limitation and is a leading cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide. Although several crucial mechanisms of COPD pathogenesis have been studied, the precise mechanism remains unknown. Extracellular vesicles (EVs), including
[...] Read more.
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is characterized by the progression of irreversible airflow limitation and is a leading cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide. Although several crucial mechanisms of COPD pathogenesis have been studied, the precise mechanism remains unknown. Extracellular vesicles (EVs), including exosomes, microvesicles, and apoptotic bodies, are released from almost all cell types and are recognized as novel cell–cell communication tools. They have been shown to carry and transfer a wide variety of molecules, such as microRNAs, messenger RNAs, and proteins, which are involved in physiological functions and the pathology of various diseases. Recently, EVs have attracted considerable attention in pulmonary research. In this review, we summarize the recent findings of EV-mediated COPD pathogenesis. We also discuss the potential clinical usefulness of EVs as biomarkers and therapeutic agents for the treatment of COPD. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Focus on Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessReview Extracellular Vesicles as New Players in Cellular Senescence
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(9), 1408; doi:10.3390/ijms17091408
Received: 22 July 2016 / Revised: 18 August 2016 / Accepted: 22 August 2016 / Published: 26 August 2016
Cited by 6 | PDF Full-text (220 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Cell senescence is associated with the secretion of many factors, the so-called “senescence-associated secretory phenotype”, which may alter tissue microenvironment, stimulating the organism to clean up senescent cells and replace them with newly divided ones. Therefore, although no longer dividing, these cells are
[...] Read more.
Cell senescence is associated with the secretion of many factors, the so-called “senescence-associated secretory phenotype”, which may alter tissue microenvironment, stimulating the organism to clean up senescent cells and replace them with newly divided ones. Therefore, although no longer dividing, these cells are still metabolically active and influence the surrounding tissue. Much attention has been recently focused not only on soluble factors released by senescent cells, but also on extracellular vesicles as conveyors of senescence signals outside the cell. Here, we give an overview of the role of extracellular vesicles in biological processes and signaling pathways related to senescence and aging. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Focus on Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessReview Telocytes and Their Extracellular Vesicles—Evidence and Hypotheses
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(8), 1322; doi:10.3390/ijms17081322
Received: 29 June 2016 / Revised: 25 July 2016 / Accepted: 26 July 2016 / Published: 12 August 2016
Cited by 6 | PDF Full-text (5206 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Entering the new millennium, nobody believed that there was the possibility of discovering a new cellular type. Nevertheless, telocytes (TCs) were described as a novel kind of interstitial cell. Ubiquitously distributed in the extracellular matrix of any tissue, TCs are regarded as cells
[...] Read more.
Entering the new millennium, nobody believed that there was the possibility of discovering a new cellular type. Nevertheless, telocytes (TCs) were described as a novel kind of interstitial cell. Ubiquitously distributed in the extracellular matrix of any tissue, TCs are regarded as cells with telopodes involved in intercellular communication by direct homo- and heterocellular junctions or by extracellular vesicle (EVs) release. Their discovery has aroused the interest of many research groups worldwide, and many researchers regard them as potentially regenerative cells. Given the experience of our laboratory, where these cells were first described, we review the evidence supporting the fact that TCs release EVs, and discuss alternative hypotheses about their future implications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Focus on Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessReview Binding and Fusion of Extracellular Vesicles to the Plasma Membrane of Their Cell Targets
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(8), 1296; doi:10.3390/ijms17081296
Received: 20 June 2016 / Revised: 1 August 2016 / Accepted: 1 August 2016 / Published: 9 August 2016
Cited by 5 | PDF Full-text (1122 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Exosomes and ectosomes, extracellular vesicles of two types generated by all cells at multivesicular bodies and the plasma membrane, respectively, play critical roles in physiology and pathology. A key mechanism of their function, analogous for both types of vesicles, is the fusion of
[...] Read more.
Exosomes and ectosomes, extracellular vesicles of two types generated by all cells at multivesicular bodies and the plasma membrane, respectively, play critical roles in physiology and pathology. A key mechanism of their function, analogous for both types of vesicles, is the fusion of their membrane to the plasma membrane of specific target cells, followed by discharge to the cytoplasm of their luminal cargo containing proteins, RNAs, and DNA. Here we summarize the present knowledge about the interactions, binding and fusions of vesicles with the cell plasma membrane. The sequence initiates with dynamic interactions, during which vesicles roll over the plasma membrane, followed by the binding of specific membrane proteins to their cell receptors. Membrane binding is then converted rapidly into fusion by mechanisms analogous to those of retroviruses. Specifically, proteins of the extracellular vesicle membranes are structurally rearranged, and their hydrophobic sequences insert into the target cell plasma membrane which undergoes lipid reorganization, protein restructuring and membrane dimpling. Single fusions are not the only process of vesicle/cell interactions. Upon intracellular reassembly of their luminal cargoes, vesicles can be regenerated, released and fused horizontally to other target cells. Fusions of extracellular vesicles are relevant also for specific therapy processes, now intensely investigated. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Focus on Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessReview Clinical Application of Human Urinary Extracellular Vesicles in Kidney and Urologic Diseases
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(7), 1043; doi:10.3390/ijms17071043
Received: 31 March 2016 / Revised: 16 June 2016 / Accepted: 22 June 2016 / Published: 30 June 2016
Cited by 3 | PDF Full-text (233 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Extracellular vesicles (EVs) have been isolated in different body fluids, including urine. The cargo of urinary EVs is composed of nucleic acids and proteins reflecting the physiological and possibly pathophysiological state of cells lining the nephron and the urinary tract. Urinary EVs have
[...] Read more.
Extracellular vesicles (EVs) have been isolated in different body fluids, including urine. The cargo of urinary EVs is composed of nucleic acids and proteins reflecting the physiological and possibly pathophysiological state of cells lining the nephron and the urinary tract. Urinary EVs have been confirmed to contain low amounts of various types of RNA that play a role in intercellular communication by transferring genetic information. This communication through EV RNAs includes both continuation of normal physiological processes and conditioning in disease mechanisms. Although proteins included in urinary EVs represent only 3% of the whole-urine proteome, urinary EVs can influence cells in the renal epithelia not only by delivering RNA cargo, but also by delivering a wide range of proteins. Since urine is a readily available biofluid, the discovery of EVs has opened a new field of biomarker research. The potential use of urinary EV RNAs and proteins as diagnostic biomarkers for various kidney and urologic diseases is currently being explored. Here, we review recent studies that deal in identifying biomarker candidates for human kidney and urologic diseases using urinary EVs and might help to understand the pathophysiology. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Focus on Extracellular Vesicles)
Open AccessReview Exosome: A Novel Approach to Stimulate Bone Regeneration through Regulation of Osteogenesis and Angiogenesis
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(5), 712; doi:10.3390/ijms17050712
Received: 31 March 2016 / Revised: 22 April 2016 / Accepted: 5 May 2016 / Published: 19 May 2016
Cited by 5 | PDF Full-text (759 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The clinical need for effective bone regeneration therapy remains in huge demands. However, the current “gold standard” treatments of autologous and allogeneic bone grafts may result in various complications. Furthermore, safety considerations of biomaterials and cell-based treatment require further clarification. Therefore, developing new
[...] Read more.
The clinical need for effective bone regeneration therapy remains in huge demands. However, the current “gold standard” treatments of autologous and allogeneic bone grafts may result in various complications. Furthermore, safety considerations of biomaterials and cell-based treatment require further clarification. Therefore, developing new therapies with stronger osteogenic potential and a lower incidence of complications is worthwhile. Recently, exosomes, small vesicles of endocytic origin, have attracted attention in bone regeneration field. The vesicles travel between cells and deliver functional cargoes, such as proteins and RNAs, thereby regulating targeted cells differentiation, commitment, function, and proliferation. Much evidence has demonstrated the important roles of exosomes in osteogenesis both in vitro and in vivo. In this review, we summarize the properties, origins and biogenesis of exosomes, and the recent reports using exosomes to regulate osteogenesis and promote bone regeneration. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Focus on Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessReview Focus on Extracellular Vesicles: Introducing the Next Small Big Thing
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(2), 170; doi:10.3390/ijms17020170
Received: 14 October 2015 / Accepted: 12 November 2015 / Published: 6 February 2016
Cited by 44 | PDF Full-text (3424 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Intercellular communication was long thought to be regulated exclusively through direct contact between cells or via release of soluble molecules that transmit the signal by binding to a suitable receptor on the target cell, and/or via uptake into that cell. With the discovery
[...] Read more.
Intercellular communication was long thought to be regulated exclusively through direct contact between cells or via release of soluble molecules that transmit the signal by binding to a suitable receptor on the target cell, and/or via uptake into that cell. With the discovery of small secreted vesicular structures that contain complex cargo, both in their lumen and the lipid membrane that surrounds them, a new frontier of signal transduction was discovered. These “extracellular vesicles” (EV) were initially thought to be garbage bags through which the cell ejected its waste. Whilst this is a major function of one type of EV, i.e., apoptotic bodies, many EVs have intricate functions in intercellular communication and compound exchange; although their physiological roles are still ill-defined. Additionally, it is now becoming increasingly clear that EVs mediate disease progression and therefore studying EVs has ignited significant interests among researchers from various fields of life sciences. Consequently, the research effort into the pathogenic roles of EVs is significantly higher even though their protective roles are not well established. The “Focus on extracellular vesicles” series of reviews highlights the current state of the art regarding various topics in EV research, whilst this review serves as an introductory overview of EVs, their biogenesis and molecular composition. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Focus on Extracellular Vesicles)
Open AccessReview Focus on Extracellular Vesicles: Physiological Role and Signalling Properties of Extracellular Membrane Vesicles
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(2), 171; doi:10.3390/ijms17020171
Received: 11 August 2015 / Accepted: 24 September 2015 / Published: 6 February 2016
Cited by 24 | PDF Full-text (335 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are a heterogeneous population of secreted membrane vesicles, with distinct biogenesis routes, biophysical properties and different functions both in physiological conditions and in disease. The release of EVs is a widespread biological process, which is conserved across species. In recent
[...] Read more.
Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are a heterogeneous population of secreted membrane vesicles, with distinct biogenesis routes, biophysical properties and different functions both in physiological conditions and in disease. The release of EVs is a widespread biological process, which is conserved across species. In recent years, numerous studies have demonstrated that several bioactive molecules are trafficked with(in) EVs, such as microRNAs, mRNAs, proteins and lipids. The understanding of their final impact on the biology of specific target cells remains matter of intense debate in the field. Also, EVs have attracted great interest as potential novel cell-free therapeutics. Here we describe the proposed physiological and pathological functions of EVs, with a particular focus on their molecular content. Also, we discuss the advances in the knowledge of the mechanisms regulating the secretion of EV-associated molecules and the specific pathways activated upon interaction with the target cell, highlighting the role of EVs in the context of the immune system and as mediators of the intercellular signalling in the brain. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Focus on Extracellular Vesicles)
Open AccessReview Focus on Extracellular Vesicles: Development of Extracellular Vesicle-Based Therapeutic Systems
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(2), 172; doi:10.3390/ijms17020172
Received: 22 August 2015 / Accepted: 29 January 2016 / Published: 6 February 2016
Cited by 21 | PDF Full-text (2681 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Many types of cells release phospholipid membrane vesicles thought to play key roles in cell-cell communication, antigen presentation, and the spread of infectious agents. Extracellular vesicles (EVs) carry various proteins, messenger RNAs (mRNAs), and microRNAs (miRNAs), like a “message in a bottle” to
[...] Read more.
Many types of cells release phospholipid membrane vesicles thought to play key roles in cell-cell communication, antigen presentation, and the spread of infectious agents. Extracellular vesicles (EVs) carry various proteins, messenger RNAs (mRNAs), and microRNAs (miRNAs), like a “message in a bottle” to cells in remote locations. The encapsulated molecules are protected from multiple types of degradative enzymes in body fluids, making EVs ideal for delivering drugs. This review presents an overview of the potential roles of EVs as natural drugs and novel drug-delivery systems. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Focus on Extracellular Vesicles)
Open AccessReview Focus on Extracellular Vesicles: Exosomes and Their Role in Protein Trafficking and Biomarker Potential in Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s Disease
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(2), 173; doi:10.3390/ijms17020173
Received: 12 August 2015 / Accepted: 21 October 2015 / Published: 6 February 2016
Cited by 20 | PDF Full-text (265 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Growing evidence indicates that small extracellular vesicles, called exosomes, are prominent mediators of neurodegenerative diseases such as prion, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease. Exosomes contain neurodegenerative disease associated proteins such as the prion protein, β-amyloid and α-synuclein. Only demonstrated so far in vivo with
[...] Read more.
Growing evidence indicates that small extracellular vesicles, called exosomes, are prominent mediators of neurodegenerative diseases such as prion, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease. Exosomes contain neurodegenerative disease associated proteins such as the prion protein, β-amyloid and α-synuclein. Only demonstrated so far in vivo with prion disease, exosomes are hypothesised to also facilitate the spread of β-amyloid and α-synuclein from their cells of origin to the extracellular environment. In the current review, we will discuss the role of exosomes in Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease including their possible contribution to disease propagation and pathology and highlight their utility as a diagnostic in neurodegenerative disease. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Focus on Extracellular Vesicles)
Open AccessReview Focus on Extracellular Vesicles: Therapeutic Potential of Stem Cell-Derived Extracellular Vesicles
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(2), 174; doi:10.3390/ijms17020174
Received: 11 August 2015 / Accepted: 15 September 2015 / Published: 6 February 2016
Cited by 13 | PDF Full-text (765 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The intense research focus on stem and progenitor cells could be attributed to their differentiation potential to generate new cells to replace diseased or lost cells in many highly intractable degenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer disease, multiple sclerosis, and heart diseases. However, experimental
[...] Read more.
The intense research focus on stem and progenitor cells could be attributed to their differentiation potential to generate new cells to replace diseased or lost cells in many highly intractable degenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer disease, multiple sclerosis, and heart diseases. However, experimental and clinical studies have increasingly attributed the therapeutic efficacy of these cells to their secretion. While stem and progenitor cells secreted many therapeutic molecules, none of these molecules singly or in combination could recapitulate the functional effects of stem cell transplantations. Recently, it was reported that extracellular vesicles (EVs) could recapitulate the therapeutic effects of stem cell transplantation. Based on the observations reported thus far, the prevailing hypothesis is that stem cell EVs exert their therapeutic effects by transferring biologically active molecules such as proteins, lipids, mRNA, and microRNA from the stem cells to injured or diseased cells. In this respect, stem cell EVs are similar to EVs from other cell types. They are both primarily vehicles for intercellular communication. Therefore, the differentiating factor is likely due to the composition of their cargo. The cargo of EVs from different cell types are known to include a common set of proteins and also proteins that reflect the cell source of the EVs and the physiological or pathological state of the cell source. Hence, elucidation of the stem cell EV cargo would provide an insight into the multiple physiological or biochemical changes necessary to affect the many reported stem cell-based therapeutic outcomes in a variety of experimental models and clinical trials. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Focus on Extracellular Vesicles)
Open AccessReview Focus on Extracellular Vesicles: New Frontiers of Cell-to-Cell Communication in Cancer
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(2), 175; doi:10.3390/ijms17020175
Received: 12 August 2015 / Accepted: 16 October 2015 / Published: 6 February 2016
Cited by 45 | PDF Full-text (1838 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Extracellular Vesicles (EVs) have received considerable attention in recent years, both as mediators of intercellular communication pathways that lead to tumor progression, and as potential sources for discovery of novel cancer biomarkers. For many years, research on EVs has mainly investigated either the
[...] Read more.
Extracellular Vesicles (EVs) have received considerable attention in recent years, both as mediators of intercellular communication pathways that lead to tumor progression, and as potential sources for discovery of novel cancer biomarkers. For many years, research on EVs has mainly investigated either the mechanism of biogenesis and cargo selection and incorporation, or the methods of EV isolation from available body fluids for biomarker discovery. Recent studies have highlighted the existence of different populations of cancer-derived EVs, with distinct molecular cargo, thus pointing to the possibility that the various EV populations might play diverse roles in cancer and that this does not happen randomly. However, data attributing cancer specific intercellular functions to given populations of EVs are still limited. A deeper functional, biochemical and molecular characterization of the various EV classes might identify more selective clinical markers, and significantly advance our knowledge of the pathogenesis and disease progression of many cancer types. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Focus on Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessReview Cardiac Extracellular Vesicles in Normal and Infarcted Heart
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(1), 63; doi:10.3390/ijms17010063
Received: 12 October 2015 / Revised: 10 December 2015 / Accepted: 18 December 2015 / Published: 5 January 2016
Cited by 16 | PDF Full-text (692 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Heart is a complex assembly of many cell types constituting myocardium, endocardium and epicardium that intensively communicate to each other in order to maintain the proper cardiac function. There are many types of intercellular intracardiac signals, with a prominent role of extracellular vesicles
[...] Read more.
Heart is a complex assembly of many cell types constituting myocardium, endocardium and epicardium that intensively communicate to each other in order to maintain the proper cardiac function. There are many types of intercellular intracardiac signals, with a prominent role of extracellular vesicles (EVs), such as exosomes and microvesicles, for long-distant delivering of complex messages. Cardiomyocytes release EVs, whose content could significantly vary depending on the stimulus. In stress, such as hypoxia, inflammation or injury, cardiomyocytes increase secretion of EVs. In hypoxic conditions, cardiac EVs are enriched with angiogenic and prosurvival factors. In acute myocardial infarction (AMI), damaged cardiac muscle cells produce EVs with increased content of angiogenic, anti-apoptotic, mitogenic and growth factors in order to induce repair and healing of the infarcted myocardium. Exosomal microRNAs play a central role in cardiac regeneration. In AMI, circulating cardiac EVs abundantly contain cardiac-specific miRNAs that serve as indicators of cardiac damage and have a big diagnostic potential as AMI biomarkers. Cardioprotective and regenerative properties of exosomes derived from cardiac and non-cardiac stem/progenitor cells are very helpful to be used in cell-free cardiotherapy and regeneration of post-infarct myocardium. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Focus on Extracellular Vesicles)
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