Special Issue "Therapeutic Applications of Extracellular Vesicles"

A special issue of Cells (ISSN 2073-4409). This special issue belongs to the section "Organelle Function".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 March 2020).

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Benedetta Bussolati
Website
Guest Editor
Department of Molecular Biotechnology and Health Sciences, University of Turin, via Nizza 52, 10126 Turin, Italy
Interests: renal regeneration; kidney injury; angiogenesis; stem cells
Dr. Cristina Grange
Website
Guest Editor
Department of Medical Sciences, University of Turin, via Nizza 52, 10126 Turin, Italy
Interests: acute kidney injury; chronic kidney disease; regenerative medicine; renal carcinomas
Prof. Jameel M. Inal
Website
Guest Editor
Biosciences Research Group, School of Life and Medical Sciences, University of Hertfordshire, College Lane, Hatfield AL10 9AB, UK
Interests: extracellular vesicles; cancer; tumour microenvironment; epithelial mesenchymal transition; infectious disease
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Extracellular vesicles (EVs) appear as a new promising cell-free therapy in regenerative medicine. EVs retain characteristics of the cell of origin, and those derived from stem cells may mimic their regenerative properties per se. EVs released by stem cells contain proteins and RNA species that act on recipient cells through a variety of mechanisms, resulting in tissue regeneration. In particular, EVs may sustain tissue proliferation, angiogenesis, and reduce apoptosis and inflammation. A large variety of preclinical data have shown the effect of EVs in acute and chronic tissue kidney, lung, hearth, liver, and brain injury, to name but a few.

The interest in EVs for therapeutic applications is related to their characteristics of safety, targeting ability, and multitarget properties. In particular, EVs derived from stem cells such as mesenchymal stromal cells are among the most studied EV sources. The possibility to engineer EVs and enrich their cargo opens new scenarios, such as delivery of bioactive molecules trough EVs from an autologous origin (serum, plasma, etc.) or from natural sources, such as milk, fruits, and vegetables.

The aim of this Special Issue is to provide an overview of the knowledge about the regenerative role of EVs, focusing on their therapeutic applications. This Special Issue will summarize the application of EVs in preclinical models of acute and chronic tissue injuries, comparing animal models, EV sources, including their subfractions, doses, routes of administration, and efficacy of treatment.

Prof. Benedetta Bussolati
Dr. Cristina Grange
Prof. Jameel M. Inal
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • exosomes
  • regeneration
  • extracellular vesicle fractions
  • tissue injury
  • stem cell derived EVs
  • EV engineering
  • EV sources
  • EVs as drug delivery vehicles

Published Papers (31 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle
Extracellular Vesicles as Drug Carriers for Enzyme Replacement Therapy to Treat CLN2 Batten Disease: Optimization of Drug Administration Routes
Cells 2020, 9(5), 1273; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9051273 - 20 May 2020
Cited by 1
Abstract
CLN2 Batten disease (BD) is one of a broad class of lysosomal storage disorders that is characterized by the deficiency of lysosomal enzyme, TPP1, resulting in a build-up of toxic intracellular storage material in all organs and subsequent damage. A major challenge for [...] Read more.
CLN2 Batten disease (BD) is one of a broad class of lysosomal storage disorders that is characterized by the deficiency of lysosomal enzyme, TPP1, resulting in a build-up of toxic intracellular storage material in all organs and subsequent damage. A major challenge for BD therapeutics is delivery of enzymatically active TPP1 to the brain to attenuate progressive loss of neurological functions. To accomplish this daunting task, we propose the harnessing of naturally occurring nanoparticles, extracellular vesicles (EVs). Herein, we incorporated TPP1 into EVs released by immune cells, macrophages, and examined biodistribution and therapeutic efficacy of EV-TPP1 in BD mouse model, using various routes of administration. Administration through intrathecal and intranasal routes resulted in high TPP1 accumulation in the brain, decreased neurodegeneration and neuroinflammation, and reduced aggregation of lysosomal storage material in BD mouse model, CLN2 knock-out mice. Parenteral intravenous and intraperitoneal administrations led to TPP1 delivery to peripheral organs: liver, kidney, spleen, and lungs. A combination of intrathecal and intraperitoneal EV-TPP1 injections significantly prolonged lifespan in BD mice. Overall, the optimization of treatment strategies is crucial for successful applications of EVs-based therapeutics for BD. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Therapeutic Applications of Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessArticle
Circulating Brain Injury Exosomal Proteins following Moderate-to-Severe Traumatic Brain Injury: Temporal Profile, Outcome Prediction and Therapy Implications
Cells 2020, 9(4), 977; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9040977 - 15 Apr 2020
Cited by 3
Abstract
Brain injury exosomal proteins are promising blood biomarker candidates in traumatic brain injury (TBI). A better understanding of their role in the diagnosis, characterization, and management of TBI is essential for upcoming clinical implementation. In the current investigation, we aimed to explore longitudinal [...] Read more.
Brain injury exosomal proteins are promising blood biomarker candidates in traumatic brain injury (TBI). A better understanding of their role in the diagnosis, characterization, and management of TBI is essential for upcoming clinical implementation. In the current investigation, we aimed to explore longitudinal trajectories of brain injury exosomal proteins in blood of patients with moderate-to-severe TBI, and to evaluate the relation with the free-circulating counterpart and patient imaging and clinical parameters. Exosomal levels of glial (glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP)) and neuronal/axonal (ubiquitin carboxy-terminal hydrolase L1 (UCH-L1), neurofilament light chain (NFL), and total-tau (t-tau)) proteins were measured in serum of 21 patients for up 5 days after injury using single molecule array (Simoa) technology. Group-based trajectory analysis was used to generate distinct temporal exosomal biomarker profiles. We found altered profiles of serum brain injury exosomal proteins following injury. The dynamics and levels of exosomal and related free-circulating markers, although correlated, showed differences. Patients with diffuse injury displayed higher acute exosomal NFL and GFAP concentrations in serum than those with focal lesions. Exosomal UCH-L1 profile characterized by acutely elevated values and a secondary steep rise was associated with early mortality (n = 2) with a sensitivity and specificity of 100%. Serum brain injury exosomal proteins yielded important diagnostic and prognostic information and represent a novel means to unveil underlying pathophysiology in patients with moderate-to-severe TBI. Our findings support their utility as potential tools to improve patient phenotyping in clinical practice and therapeutic trials. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Therapeutic Applications of Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessArticle
Boosting the Biogenesis and Secretion of Mesenchymal Stem Cell-Derived Exosomes
Cells 2020, 9(3), 660; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9030660 - 09 Mar 2020
Cited by 4
Abstract
A limitation of using exosomes to their fullest potential is their limited secretion from cells, a major bottleneck to efficient exosome production and application. This is especially true for mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), which can self-renew but have a limited expansion capacity, undergoing [...] Read more.
A limitation of using exosomes to their fullest potential is their limited secretion from cells, a major bottleneck to efficient exosome production and application. This is especially true for mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), which can self-renew but have a limited expansion capacity, undergoing senescence after only a few passages, with exosomes derived from senescent stem cells showing impaired regenerative capacity compared to young cells. Here, we examined the effects of small molecule modulators capable of enhancing exosome secretion from MSCs. The treatment of MSCs with a combination of N-methyldopamine and norepinephrine robustly increased exosome production by three-fold without altering the ability of the MSC exosomes to induce angiogenesis, polarize macrophages to an anti-inflammatory phenotype, or downregulate collagen expression. These small molecule modulators provide a promising means to increase exosome production by MSCs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Therapeutic Applications of Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessArticle
Extracellular Vesicles Derived from Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells Promote Renoprotection in Acute Kidney Injury Model
Cells 2020, 9(2), 453; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9020453 - 17 Feb 2020
Cited by 4
Abstract
Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) have been the focus of several studies due to their wide range of application, including in cellular therapy. The use of iPSC in regenerative medicine is limited by their tumorigenic potential. Extracellular vesicles (EV) derived from stem cells [...] Read more.
Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) have been the focus of several studies due to their wide range of application, including in cellular therapy. The use of iPSC in regenerative medicine is limited by their tumorigenic potential. Extracellular vesicles (EV) derived from stem cells have been shown to support renal recovery after injury. However, no investigation has explored the potential of iPSC-EV in the treatment of kidney diseases. To evaluate this potential, we submitted renal tubule cells to hypoxia-reoxygenation injury, and we analyzed cell death rate and changes in functional mitochondria mass. An in vivo model of ischemia-reperfusion injury was used to evaluate morphological and functional alterations. Gene array profile was applied to investigate the mechanism involved in iPSC-EV effects. In addition, EV derived from adipose mesenchymal cells (ASC-EV) were also used to compare the potential of iPSC-EV in support of tissue recovery. The results showed that iPSC-EV were capable of reducing cell death and inflammatory response with similar efficacy than ASC-EV. Moreover, iPSC-EV protected functional mitochondria and regulated several genes associated with oxidative stress. Taken together, these results show that iPSC can be an alternative source of EV in the treatment of different aspects of kidney disease. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Therapeutic Applications of Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessArticle
Purity Determines the Effect of Extracellular Vesicles Derived from Mesenchymal Stromal Cells
Cells 2020, 9(2), 422; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9020422 - 12 Feb 2020
Cited by 2
Abstract
Extracellular vesicles (EVs) have been recently identified as vital components of cell-based therapies based on the observation that conditioned media from cultured stromal cells reproduce some of the beneficial effects of intact cells. In order to obtain clinically active EVs derived from Mesenchymal [...] Read more.
Extracellular vesicles (EVs) have been recently identified as vital components of cell-based therapies based on the observation that conditioned media from cultured stromal cells reproduce some of the beneficial effects of intact cells. In order to obtain clinically active EVs derived from Mesenchymal Stromal Cells (MSCs) different procedures have been reported in the literature. Usually, non-confluent cells are incubated with culture medium for 48 h either with EV-depleted Fetal Bovine Serum (FBS) or without FBS. Our aim was to compare the effects of EVs isolated by ultracentrifugation from human umbilical cord MSC conditioned media obtained using these two conditions: with EV-depleted FBS (UC) or without FBS (UCw/o) on the mRNA expression levels of extracellular matrix related genes using the mouse chondrogenic cell line ATDC-5. We observed a deleterious effect on chondrogenic cells treated with UCw/o, showing higher mRNA expression levels of different metalloproteinases and decorin (Dcn) and lower collagen (Col1a1 and Col2a1) and aggrecan (Acan) mRNA levels. To elucidate whether this deleterious effect was induced by the EVs or by any proteins co-purified in the EV pellet, we used size exclusion chromatography (SEC) to further purify the EV pellet, obtaining an EV enriched fraction (EV or EVw/o) and a protein enriched fraction (Prot or Protw/o). Our results pointed that the negative effect on the chondrogenic cell line was due to the contaminant proteins coisolated with the EVs by ultracentrifugation and not from the EVs themselves. Thus, these results highlight the importance of working with well purified EV preparations to specifically achieve their therapeutic effect. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Therapeutic Applications of Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessArticle
Myxobacteria-Derived Outer Membrane Vesicles: Potential Applicability Against Intracellular Infections
Cells 2020, 9(1), 194; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9010194 - 12 Jan 2020
Cited by 3
Abstract
In 2019, it was estimated that 2.5 million people die from lower tract respiratory infections annually. One of the main causes of these infections is Staphylococcus aureus, a bacterium that can invade and survive within mammalian cells. S. aureus intracellular infections are [...] Read more.
In 2019, it was estimated that 2.5 million people die from lower tract respiratory infections annually. One of the main causes of these infections is Staphylococcus aureus, a bacterium that can invade and survive within mammalian cells. S. aureus intracellular infections are difficult to treat because several classes of antibiotics are unable to permeate through the cell wall and reach the pathogen. This condition increases the need for new therapeutic avenues, able to deliver antibiotics efficiently. In this work, we obtained outer membrane vesicles (OMVs) derived from the myxobacteria Cystobacter velatus strain Cbv34 and Cystobacter ferrugineus strain Cbfe23, that are naturally antimicrobial, to target intracellular infections, and investigated how they can affect the viability of epithelial and macrophage cell lines. We evaluated by cytometric bead array whether they induce the expression of proinflammatory cytokines in blood immune cells. Using confocal laser scanning microscopy and flow cytometry, we also investigated their interaction and uptake into mammalian cells. Finally, we studied the effect of OMVs on planktonic and intracellular S. aureus. We found that while Cbv34 OMVs were not cytotoxic to cells at any concentration tested, Cbfe23 OMVs affected the viability of macrophages, leading to a 50% decrease at a concentration of 125,000 OMVs/cell. We observed only little to moderate stimulation of release of TNF-alpha, IL-8, IL-6 and IL-1beta by both OMVs. Cbfe23 OMVs have better interaction with the cells than Cbv34 OMVs, being taken up faster by them, but both seem to remain mostly on the cell surface after 24 h of incubation. This, however, did not impair their bacteriostatic activity against intracellular S. aureus. In this study, we provide an important basis for implementing OMVs in the treatment of intracellular infections. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Therapeutic Applications of Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessArticle
Adipose Stem Cell-Derived Extracellular Vesicles Induce Proliferation of Schwann Cells via Internalization
Cells 2020, 9(1), 163; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9010163 - 09 Jan 2020
Cited by 5
Abstract
Recent studies showed a beneficial effect of adipose stem cell-derived extracellular vesicles (ADSC-EVs) on sciatic nerve repair, presumably through Schwann cell (SC) modulation. However, it has not yet been elucidated whether ADSC-EVs exert this supportive effect on SCs by extracellular receptor binding, fusion [...] Read more.
Recent studies showed a beneficial effect of adipose stem cell-derived extracellular vesicles (ADSC-EVs) on sciatic nerve repair, presumably through Schwann cell (SC) modulation. However, it has not yet been elucidated whether ADSC-EVs exert this supportive effect on SCs by extracellular receptor binding, fusion to the SC membrane, or endocytosis mediated internalization. ADSCs, ADSC-EVs, and SCs were isolated from rats and characterized according to associated marker expression and properties. The proliferation rate of SCs in response to ADSC-EVs was determined using a multicolor immunofluorescence staining panel followed by automated image analysis. SCs treated with ADSC-EVs and silica beads were further investigated by 3-D high resolution confocal microscopy and live cell imaging. Our findings demonstrated that ADSC-EVs significantly enhanced the proliferation of SCs in a time- and dose-dependent manner. 3-D image analysis revealed a perinuclear location of ADSC-EVs and their accumulation in vesicular-like structures within the SC cytoplasm. Upon comparing intracellular localization patterns of silica beads and ADSC-EVs in SCs, we found striking resemblance in size and distribution. Live cell imaging visualized that the uptake of ADSC-EVs preferentially took place at the SC processes from which the EVs were transported towards the nucleus. This study provided first evidence for an endocytosis mediated internalization of ADSC-EVs by SCs and underlines the therapeutic potential of ADSC-EVs in future approaches for nerve regeneration. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Therapeutic Applications of Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessArticle
Extracellular Vesicles–Encapsulated MicroRNA-125b Produced in Genetically Modified Mesenchymal Stromal Cells Inhibits Hepatocellular Carcinoma Cell Proliferation
Cells 2019, 8(12), 1560; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells8121560 - 03 Dec 2019
Cited by 3
Abstract
Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is the most frequent type of primary liver cancer and one of the prominent causes of cancer mortality, leading to approximately 780,000 deaths per year worldwide. Down-regulation of microRNA-125b (miR-125b) is a prognostic indicator in HCC patients. Conversely, over-expression of [...] Read more.
Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is the most frequent type of primary liver cancer and one of the prominent causes of cancer mortality, leading to approximately 780,000 deaths per year worldwide. Down-regulation of microRNA-125b (miR-125b) is a prognostic indicator in HCC patients. Conversely, over-expression of miR-125b in HCC cells induces cell cycle arrest, inhibits proliferation, migration and invasion. Extracellular vesicles (EVs) function as intercellular messengers transferring proteins, RNAs, DNAs, carbohydrates, and lipids. Since EVs protect their cargo from degradation, delivery of therapeutic bioactive molecules, in particular miRNAs, through EVs represents an innovative avenue for cancer therapy. In this study, we evaluated a replacement strategy for the treatment of HCC via delivery of EVs secreted from human adipose tissue-derived mesenchymal stromal/medicinal signaling cells (ASCs) genetically modified with a lentiviral vector expressing miR-125b with a specific ExoMotif sequence tag to enhance the loading into extracellular vesicles. In particular, we determined that the delivery of miR-125b-loaded EVs produced in engineered ASCs specifically reduces HCC cell proliferation in vitro modulating a series of miR-125b targets, which belong to the p53 signaling pathway. This proof-of-concept study supports the development of innovative therapeutic strategies for HCC via EV-mediated miRNA delivery. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Therapeutic Applications of Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessArticle
NG2 as an Identity and Quality Marker of Mesenchymal Stem Cell Extracellular Vesicles
Cells 2019, 8(12), 1524; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells8121524 - 27 Nov 2019
Cited by 5
Abstract
The therapeutic potential of mesenchymal stem cell (MSC) extracellular vesicles (EV) is currently under investigation in many pathological contexts. Both adult and perinatal MSC are being considered as sources of EV. Herein, we address antigen expression of cord blood and bone marrow MSC [...] Read more.
The therapeutic potential of mesenchymal stem cell (MSC) extracellular vesicles (EV) is currently under investigation in many pathological contexts. Both adult and perinatal MSC are being considered as sources of EV. Herein, we address antigen expression of cord blood and bone marrow MSC and released EV to define an identity and quality parameter of MSC EV as a medicinal product in the context of clinical applications. The research focuses on EV-shuttled neural/glial antigen 2 (NG2), which has previously been detected as a promising surface marker to distinguish perinatal versus adult MSC. Indeed, NG2 was significantly more abundant in cord blood than bone marrow MSC and MSC EV. Ultracentrifuge-isolated EV were then challenged for their pro-angiogenic properties on an xCELLigence system as quality control. NG2+ cord blood MSC EV, but not bone marrow MSC EV, promote bFGF and PDGF-AA proliferative effect on endothelial cells. Likewise, they successfully rescue angiostatin-induced endothelial cell growth arrest. In both cases, the effects are NG2-dependent. These results point at NG2 as an identity and quality parameter for cord blood MSC EV, paving the way for their clinical translation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Therapeutic Applications of Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessArticle
Biofabrication of Cell-Derived Nanovesicles: A Potential Alternative to Extracellular Vesicles for Regenerative Medicine
Cells 2019, 8(12), 1509; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells8121509 - 25 Nov 2019
Cited by 8
Abstract
Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are mediators of intercellular communication by transferring functional biomolecules from their originating cells to recipient cells. This intrinsic ability has gained EVs increased scientific interest in their use as a direct therapeutic in the field of regenerative medicine or as [...] Read more.
Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are mediators of intercellular communication by transferring functional biomolecules from their originating cells to recipient cells. This intrinsic ability has gained EVs increased scientific interest in their use as a direct therapeutic in the field of regenerative medicine or as vehicles for drug delivery. EVs derived from stem cells or progenitor cells can act as paracrine mediators to promote repair and regeneration of damaged tissues. Despite substantial research efforts into EVs for various applications, their use remains limited by the lack of highly efficient and scalable production methods. Here, we present the biofabrication of cell-derived nanovesicles (NVs) as a scalable, efficient, and cost-effective production alternative to EVs. We demonstrate that NVs have a comparable size and morphology as EVs, but lack standard EV (surface) markers. Additionally, in vitro uptake experiments show that human fetal cardiac fibroblast, endothelial cells, and cardiomyocyte progenitor cells internalize NVs. We observed that cardiac progenitor cell-derived NVs and EVs are capable of activating mitogen-activated protein kinase 1/2 (MAPK1/2)-extracellular signal-regulated kinase, and that both NVs and EVs derived from A431 and HEK293 cells can functionally deliver Cre-recombinase mRNA or protein to other cells. These observations indicate that NVs may have similar functional properties as EVs. Therefore, NVs have the potential to be applied for therapeutic delivery and regenerative medicine purposes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Therapeutic Applications of Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessArticle
Placental Mesenchymal Stem Cell-Derived Extracellular Vesicles Promote Myelin Regeneration in an Animal Model of Multiple Sclerosis
Cells 2019, 8(12), 1497; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells8121497 - 23 Nov 2019
Cited by 9
Abstract
Mesenchymal stem/stromal cells (MSCs) display potent immunomodulatory and regenerative capabilities through the secretion of bioactive factors, such as proteins, cytokines, chemokines as well as the release of extracellular vesicles (EVs). These functional properties of MSCs make them ideal candidates for the treatment of [...] Read more.
Mesenchymal stem/stromal cells (MSCs) display potent immunomodulatory and regenerative capabilities through the secretion of bioactive factors, such as proteins, cytokines, chemokines as well as the release of extracellular vesicles (EVs). These functional properties of MSCs make them ideal candidates for the treatment of degenerative and inflammatory diseases, including multiple sclerosis (MS). MS is a heterogenous disease that is typically characterized by inflammation, demyelination, gliosis and axonal loss. In the current study, an induced experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) murine model of MS was utilized. At peak disease onset, animals were treated with saline, placenta-derived MSCs (PMSCs), as well as low and high doses of PMSC-EVs. Animals treated with PMSCs and high-dose PMSC-EVs displayed improved motor function outcomes as compared to animals treated with saline. Symptom improvement by PMSCs and PMSC-EVs led to reduced DNA damage in oligodendroglia populations and increased myelination within the spinal cord of treated mice. In vitro data demonstrate that PMSC-EVs promote myelin regeneration by inducing endogenous oligodendrocyte precursor cells to differentiate into mature myelinating oligodendrocytes. These findings support that PMSCs’ mechanism of action is mediated by the secretion of EVs. Therefore, PMSC-derived EVs are a feasible alternative to cellular based therapies for MS, as demonstrated in an animal model of the disease. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Therapeutic Applications of Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessArticle
The Anti-Apoptotic Effect of ASC-Exosomes in an In Vitro ALS Model and Their Proteomic Analysis
Cells 2019, 8(9), 1087; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells8091087 - 14 Sep 2019
Cited by 9
Abstract
Stem cell therapy represents a promising approach in the treatment of several neurodegenerative disorders, including amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). The beneficial effect of stem cells is exerted by paracrine mediators, as exosomes, suggesting a possible potential use of these extracellular vesicles as non-cell [...] Read more.
Stem cell therapy represents a promising approach in the treatment of several neurodegenerative disorders, including amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). The beneficial effect of stem cells is exerted by paracrine mediators, as exosomes, suggesting a possible potential use of these extracellular vesicles as non-cell based therapy. We demonstrated that exosomes isolated from adipose stem cells (ASC) display a neuroprotective role in an in vitro model of ALS. Moreover, the internalization of ASC-exosomes by the cells was shown and the molecules and the mechanisms by which exosomes could exert their beneficial effect were addressed. We performed for the first time a comprehensive proteomic analysis of exosomes derived from murine ASC. We identified a total of 189 proteins and the shotgun proteomics analysis revealed that the exosomal proteins are mainly involved in cell adhesion and negative regulation of the apoptotic process. We correlated the protein content to the anti-apoptotic effect of exosomes observing a downregulation of pro-apoptotic proteins Bax and cleaved caspase-3 and upregulation of anti-apoptotic protein Bcl-2 α, in an in vitro model of ALS after cell treatment with exosomes. Overall, this study shows the neuroprotective effect of ASC-exosomes after their internalization and their global protein profile, that could be useful to understand how exosomes act, demonstrating that they can be employed as therapy in neurodegenerative diseases. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Therapeutic Applications of Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessArticle
Adipose Mesenchymal Extracellular Vesicles as Alpha-1-Antitrypsin Physiological Delivery Systems for Lung Regeneration
Cells 2019, 8(9), 965; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells8090965 - 23 Aug 2019
Cited by 14
Abstract
Accumulating evidence shows that Mesenchymal Stem/Stromal Cells (MSCs) exert their therapeutic effects by the release of secretome, made of both soluble proteins and nano/microstructured extracellular vesicles (EVs). In this work, for the first time, we proved by a proteomic investigation that adipose-derived (AD)-MSC-secretome [...] Read more.
Accumulating evidence shows that Mesenchymal Stem/Stromal Cells (MSCs) exert their therapeutic effects by the release of secretome, made of both soluble proteins and nano/microstructured extracellular vesicles (EVs). In this work, for the first time, we proved by a proteomic investigation that adipose-derived (AD)-MSC-secretome contains alpha-1-antitrypsin (AAT), the main elastase inhibitor in the lung, 72 other proteins involved in protease/antiprotease balance, and 46 proteins involved in the response to bacteria. By secretome fractionation, we proved that AAT is present both in the soluble fraction of secretome and aggregated and/or adsorbed on the surface of EVs, that can act as natural carriers promoting AAT in vivo stability and activity. To modulate secretome composition, AD-MSCs were cultured in different stimulating conditions, such as serum starvation or chemicals (IL-1β and/or dexamethasone) and the expression of the gene encoding for AAT was increased. By testing in vitro the anti-elastase activity of MSC-secretome, a dose-dependent effect was observed; chemical stimulation of AD-MSCs did not increase their secretome anti-elastase activity. Finally, MSC-secretome showed anti-bacterial activity on Gram-negative bacteria, especially for Klebsiella pneumoniae. These preliminary results, in addition to the already demonstrated immunomodulation, pave the way for the use of MSC-secretome in the treatment of AAT-deficiency lung diseases. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Therapeutic Applications of Extracellular Vesicles)
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Review

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Open AccessReview
Extracellular Vesicles as an Efficient and Versatile System for Drug Delivery
Cells 2020, 9(10), 2191; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9102191 - 29 Sep 2020
Abstract
Despite the recent advances in drug development, the majority of novel therapeutics have not been successfully translated into clinical applications. One of the major factors hindering their clinical translation is the lack of a safe, non-immunogenic delivery system with high target specificity upon [...] Read more.
Despite the recent advances in drug development, the majority of novel therapeutics have not been successfully translated into clinical applications. One of the major factors hindering their clinical translation is the lack of a safe, non-immunogenic delivery system with high target specificity upon systemic administration. In this respect, extracellular vesicles (EVs), as natural carriers of bioactive cargo, have emerged as a promising solution and can be further modified to improve their therapeutic efficacy. In this review, we provide an overview of the biogenesis pathways, biochemical features, and isolation methods of EVs with an emphasis on their many intrinsic properties that make them desirable as drug carriers. We then describe in detail the current advances in EV therapeutics, focusing on how EVs can be engineered to achieve improved target specificity, better circulation kinetics, and efficient encapsulation of therapeutic payloads. We also identify the challenges and obstacles ahead for clinical translation and provide an outlook on the future perspective of EV-based therapeutics. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Therapeutic Applications of Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessReview
Extracellular Vesicles Mediate B Cell Immune Response and Are a Potential Target for Cancer Therapy
Cells 2020, 9(6), 1518; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9061518 - 22 Jun 2020
Cited by 1
Abstract
Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are increasingly understood to participate directly in many essential aspects of host antitumor immune response. Tumor- and immune-cell-derived EVs function in local and systemic contexts with roles in immune processes including cancer antigen conveyance, immune cell priming and activation, as [...] Read more.
Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are increasingly understood to participate directly in many essential aspects of host antitumor immune response. Tumor- and immune-cell-derived EVs function in local and systemic contexts with roles in immune processes including cancer antigen conveyance, immune cell priming and activation, as well as immune escape. Current practice of cancer immunotherapy has de facto focused on eliciting T-cell-mediated cytotoxic responses. Humoral immunity is also known to exert antitumor effects, and B cells have been demonstrated to have functions that extend beyond antibody production to include antigen presentation and activation and modulation of T cells and innate immune effectors. Evidence of B cell response against tumor-associated antigens (TAAs) is observed in early stages of tumorigenesis and in most solid tumor types. It is known that EVs convey diverse TAAs, express antigenic-peptide-loaded MHCs, and complex with circulating plasma antitumoral autoantibodies. In this review, we will consider the relationships between EVs, B cells, and other antigen-presenting cells, especially in relation to TAAs. Understanding the intersection of EVs and the cancer immunome will enable opportunities for developing tumor antigen targets, antitumor vaccines and harnessing the full potential of multiple immune system components for next-generation cancer immunotherapies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Therapeutic Applications of Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessReview
Adult Stem Cell-Derived Extracellular Vesicles in Cancer Treatment: Opportunities and Challenges
Cells 2020, 9(5), 1171; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9051171 - 08 May 2020
Cited by 2
Abstract
Adult stem cells (SCs) participate in tissue repair and homeostasis regulation. The relative ease of SC handling and their therapeutic effect has made of these cell popular candidates for cellular therapy. However, several problems interfere with their clinical application in cancer treatment, like [...] Read more.
Adult stem cells (SCs) participate in tissue repair and homeostasis regulation. The relative ease of SC handling and their therapeutic effect has made of these cell popular candidates for cellular therapy. However, several problems interfere with their clinical application in cancer treatment, like safety issues, unpredictable pro-tumour effects, and tissue entrapment. Therefore cell-free therapies that exhibit SC properties are being investigated. It is now well known that adult SCs exhibit their therapeutic effect via paracrine mechanisms. In addition to secretory proteins, SCs also release extracellular vesicles (EV) that deliver their contents to the target cells. Cancer treatment is one of the most promising applications of SC-EVs. Moreover, SC-EVs could be modified to improve targeted drug delivery. The aim of the review is to summarise current knowledge of adult SC-EV application in cancer treatment and to emphasise future opportunities and challenges in cancer treatment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Therapeutic Applications of Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessReview
Mesenchymal and Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells-Derived Extracellular Vesicles: The New Frontier for Regenerative Medicine?
Cells 2020, 9(5), 1163; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9051163 - 08 May 2020
Cited by 7
Abstract
Regenerative medicine aims to repair damaged, tissues or organs for the treatment of various diseases, which have been poorly managed with conventional drugs and medical procedures. To date, multimodal regenerative methods include transplant of healthy organs, tissues, or cells, body stimulation to activate [...] Read more.
Regenerative medicine aims to repair damaged, tissues or organs for the treatment of various diseases, which have been poorly managed with conventional drugs and medical procedures. To date, multimodal regenerative methods include transplant of healthy organs, tissues, or cells, body stimulation to activate a self-healing response in damaged tissues, as well as the combined use of cells and bio-degradable scaffold to obtain functional tissues. Certainly, stem cells are promising tools in regenerative medicine due to their ability to induce de novo tissue formation and/or promote organ repair and regeneration. Currently, several studies have shown that the beneficial stem cell effects, especially for mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) and induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) in damaged tissue restore are not dependent on their engraftment and differentiation on the injury site, but rather to their paracrine activity. It is now well known that paracrine action of stem cells is due to their ability to release extracellular vesicles (EVs). EVs play a fundamental role in cell-to-cell communication and are directly involved in tissue regeneration. In the present review, we tried to summarize the molecular mechanisms through which MSCs and iPSCs-derived EVs carry out their therapeutic action and their possible application for the treatment of several diseases. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Therapeutic Applications of Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessReview
Emerging Role of Exosomes in Diagnosis and Treatment of Infectious and Inflammatory Bowel Diseases
Cells 2020, 9(5), 1111; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9051111 - 30 Apr 2020
Cited by 4
Abstract
To communicate with each other, cells release exosomes that transfer their composition, including lipids, proteins and nucleic acids, to neighboring cells, thus playing a role in various pathophysiological processes. During an infection with pathogenic bacteria, such as adherent-invasive E. coli (AIEC) associated with [...] Read more.
To communicate with each other, cells release exosomes that transfer their composition, including lipids, proteins and nucleic acids, to neighboring cells, thus playing a role in various pathophysiological processes. During an infection with pathogenic bacteria, such as adherent-invasive E. coli (AIEC) associated with Crohn disease, exosomes secreted by infected cells can have an impact on the innate immune responses of surrounding cells to infection. Furthermore, inflammation can be amplified via the exosomal shuttle during infection with pathogenic bacteria, which could contribute to the development of the associated disease. Since these vesicles can be released in various biological fluids, changes in exosomal content may provide a means for the identification of non-invasive biomarkers for infectious and inflammatory bowel diseases. Moreover, evidence suggests that exosomes could be used as vaccines to prime the immune system to recognize and kill invading pathogens, and as therapeutic components relieving intestinal inflammation. Here, we summarize the current knowledge on the role of exosomes in bacterial infections and highlight their potential use as biomarkers, vaccines and conveyers of therapeutic molecules in inflammatory bowel diseases. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Therapeutic Applications of Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessReview
Sorting Mechanisms for MicroRNAs into Extracellular Vesicles and Their Associated Diseases
Cells 2020, 9(4), 1044; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9041044 - 22 Apr 2020
Cited by 14
Abstract
Extracellular vesicles (EV) are secretory membranous elements used by cells to transport proteins, lipids, mRNAs, and microRNAs (miRNAs). While their existence has been known for many years, only recently has research begun to identify their function in intercellular communication and gene regulation. Importantly, [...] Read more.
Extracellular vesicles (EV) are secretory membranous elements used by cells to transport proteins, lipids, mRNAs, and microRNAs (miRNAs). While their existence has been known for many years, only recently has research begun to identify their function in intercellular communication and gene regulation. Importantly, cells have the ability to selectively sort miRNA into EVs for secretion to nearby or distant targets. These mechanisms broadly include RNA-binding proteins such as hnRNPA2B1 and Argonaute-2, but also membranous proteins involved in EV biogenesis such as Caveolin-1 and Neural Sphingomyelinase 2. Moreover, certain disease states have also identified dysregulated EV-miRNA content, shedding light on the potential role of selective sorting in pathogenesis. These pathologies include chronic lung disease, immune response, neuroinflammation, diabetes mellitus, cancer, and heart disease. In this review, we will overview the mechanisms whereby cells selectively sort miRNA into EVs and also outline disease states where EV-miRNAs become dysregulated. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Therapeutic Applications of Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessReview
Mesenchymal Stem Cell Derived Extracellular Vesicles for Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine Applications
Cells 2020, 9(4), 991; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9040991 - 16 Apr 2020
Cited by 7
Abstract
Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are being extensively investigated for their potential in tissue engineering and regenerative medicine. However, recent evidence suggests that the beneficial effects of MSCs may be manifest by their released extracellular vesicles (EVs); typically not requiring the administration of MSCs. [...] Read more.
Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are being extensively investigated for their potential in tissue engineering and regenerative medicine. However, recent evidence suggests that the beneficial effects of MSCs may be manifest by their released extracellular vesicles (EVs); typically not requiring the administration of MSCs. This evidence, predominantly from pre-clinical in vitro and in vivo studies, suggests that MSC-EVs may exhibit substantial therapeutic properties in many pathophysiological conditions, potentially restoring an extensive range of damaged or diseased tissues and organs. These benefits of MSC EVs are apparently found, regardless of the anatomical or body fluid origin of the MSCs (and include e.g., bone marrow, adipose tissue, umbilical cord, urine, etc). Furthermore, early indications suggest that the favourable effects of MSC-EVs could be further enhanced by modifying the way in which the donor MSCs are cultured (for example, in hypoxic compared to normoxic conditions, in 3D compared to 2D culture formats) and/or if the EVs are subsequently bio-engineered (for example, loaded with specific cargo). So far, few human clinical trials of MSC-EVs have been conducted and questions remain unanswered on whether the heterogeneous population of EVs is beneficial or some specific sub-populations, how best we can culture and scale-up MSC-EV production and isolation for clinical utility, and in what format they should be administered. However, as reviewed here, there is now substantial evidence supporting the use of MSC-EVs in tissue engineering and regenerative medicine and further research to establish how best to exploit this approach for societal and economic benefit is warranted. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Therapeutic Applications of Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessReview
Extracellular Vesicles in NAFLD/ALD: From Pathobiology to Therapy
Cells 2020, 9(4), 817; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9040817 - 27 Mar 2020
Cited by 5
Abstract
In recent years, knowledge on the biology and pathobiology of extracellular vesicles (EVs) has exploded. EVs are submicron membrane-bound structures secreted from different cell types containing a wide variety of bioactive molecules (e.g., proteins, lipids, and nucleic acids (coding and non-coding RNA) and [...] Read more.
In recent years, knowledge on the biology and pathobiology of extracellular vesicles (EVs) has exploded. EVs are submicron membrane-bound structures secreted from different cell types containing a wide variety of bioactive molecules (e.g., proteins, lipids, and nucleic acids (coding and non-coding RNA) and mitochondrial DNA). EVs have important functions in cell-to-cell communication and are found in a wide variety of tissues and body fluids. Better delineation of EV structures and advances in the isolation and characterization of their cargo have allowed the diagnostic and therapeutic implications of these particles to be explored. In the field of liver diseases, EVs are emerging as key players in the pathogenesis of both nonalcoholic liver disease (NAFLD) and alcoholic liver disease (ALD), the most prevalent liver diseases worldwide, and their complications, including development of hepatocellular carcinoma. In these diseases, stressed/damaged hepatocytes release large quantities of EVs that contribute to the occurrence of inflammation, fibrogenesis, and angiogenesis, which are key pathobiological processes in liver disease progression. Moreover, the specific molecular signatures of released EVs in biofluids have allowed EVs to be considered as promising candidates to serve as disease biomarkers. Additionally, different experimental studies have shown that EVs may have potential for therapeutic use as a liver-specific delivery method of different agents, taking advantage of their hepatocellular uptake through interactions with specific receptors. In this review, we focused on the most recent findings concerning the role of EVs as new structures mediating autocrine and paracrine intercellular communication in both ALD and NAFLD, as well as their potential use as biomarkers of disease severity and progression. Emerging therapeutic applications of EVs in these liver diseases were also examined, along with the potential for successful transition from bench to clinic. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Therapeutic Applications of Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessReview
Pathophysiological Role and Potential Therapeutic Exploitation of Exosomes in Ovarian Cancer
Cells 2020, 9(4), 814; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9040814 - 27 Mar 2020
Cited by 2
Abstract
Exosomes are extracellular vesicles involved in several biological and pathological molecules and can carry many bioactive materials to target cells. They work as important mediators of cell-cell communication and play essential roles in many diseases, especially in cancer. Ovarian cancer is one of [...] Read more.
Exosomes are extracellular vesicles involved in several biological and pathological molecules and can carry many bioactive materials to target cells. They work as important mediators of cell-cell communication and play essential roles in many diseases, especially in cancer. Ovarian cancer is one of the most common gynecological malignancies. Most patients are diagnosed at advanced stages involving widespread peritoneal dissemination, resulting in poor prognosis. Emerging evidence has shown that exosomes play vital roles throughout the progression of ovarian cancer. Moreover, the development of engineered exosome-based therapeutic applications— including drug delivery systems, biomolecular targets and immune therapy—has increased drastically. Herein, we review the functional features of exosomes in ovarian cancer progression and the therapeutic application potential of exosomes as novel cancer treatments. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Therapeutic Applications of Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessReview
Message in a Bottle: Upgrading Cardiac Repair into Rejuvenation
Cells 2020, 9(3), 724; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9030724 - 15 Mar 2020
Cited by 5
Abstract
Ischaemic cardiac disease is associated with a loss of cardiomyocytes and an intrinsic lack of myocardial renewal. Recent work has shown that the heart retains limited cardiomyocyte proliferation, which remains inefficient when facing pathological conditions. While broadly active in the neonatal mammalian heart, [...] Read more.
Ischaemic cardiac disease is associated with a loss of cardiomyocytes and an intrinsic lack of myocardial renewal. Recent work has shown that the heart retains limited cardiomyocyte proliferation, which remains inefficient when facing pathological conditions. While broadly active in the neonatal mammalian heart, this mechanism becomes quiescent soon after birth, suggesting loss of regenerative potential with maturation into adulthood. A key question is whether this temporary regenerative window can be enhanced via appropriate stimulation and further extended. Recently the search for novel therapeutic approaches for heart disease has centred on stem cell biology. The “paracrine effect” has been proposed as a promising strategy to boost endogenous reparative and regenerative mechanisms from within the cardiac tissue by exploiting the modulatory potential of soluble stem cell-secreted factors. As such, growing interest has been specifically addressed towards stem/progenitor cell-secreted extracellular vesicles (EVs), which can be easily isolated in vitro from cell-conditioned medium. This review will provide a comprehensive overview of the current paradigm on cardiac repair and regeneration, with a specific focus on the role and mechanism(s) of paracrine action of EVs from cardiac stromal progenitors as compared to exogenous stem cells in order to discuss the optimal choice for future therapy. In addition, the challenges to overcoming translational EV biology from bench to bedside for future cardiac regenerative medicine will be discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Therapeutic Applications of Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessReview
Exosomes Could Offer New Options to Combat the Long-Term Complications Inflicted by Gestational Diabetes Mellitus
Cells 2020, 9(3), 675; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9030675 - 10 Mar 2020
Cited by 2
Abstract
Gestational diabetes Mellitus (GDM) is a complex clinical condition that promotes pelvic floor myopathy, thus predisposing sufferers to urinary incontinence (UI). GDM usually regresses after birth. Nonetheless, a GDM history is associated with higher risk of subsequently developing type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular diseases [...] Read more.
Gestational diabetes Mellitus (GDM) is a complex clinical condition that promotes pelvic floor myopathy, thus predisposing sufferers to urinary incontinence (UI). GDM usually regresses after birth. Nonetheless, a GDM history is associated with higher risk of subsequently developing type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular diseases (CVD) and UI. Some aspects of the pathophysiology of GDM remain unclear and the associated pathologies (outcomes) are poorly addressed, simultaneously raising public health costs and diminishing women’s quality of life. Exosomes are small extracellular vesicles produced and actively secreted by cells as part of their intercellular communication system. Exosomes are heterogenous in their cargo and depending on the cell sources and environment, they can mediate both pathogenetic and therapeutic functions. With the advancement in knowledge of exosomes, new perspectives have emerged to support the mechanistic understanding, prediction/diagnosis and ultimately, treatment of the post-GMD outcomes. Here, we will review recent advances in knowledge of the role of exosomes in GDM and related areas and discuss the possibilities for translating exosomes as therapeutic agents in the GDM clinical setting. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Therapeutic Applications of Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessReview
Exosomes: From Potential Culprits to New Therapeutic Promise in the Setting of Cardiac Fibrosis
Cells 2020, 9(3), 592; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9030592 - 02 Mar 2020
Cited by 4
Abstract
Fibrosis is a significant global health problem associated with many inflammatory and degenerative diseases affecting multiple organs, individually or simultaneously. Fibrosis develops when extracellular matrix (ECM) remodeling becomes excessive or uncontrolled and is associated with nearly all forms of heart disease. Cardiac fibroblasts [...] Read more.
Fibrosis is a significant global health problem associated with many inflammatory and degenerative diseases affecting multiple organs, individually or simultaneously. Fibrosis develops when extracellular matrix (ECM) remodeling becomes excessive or uncontrolled and is associated with nearly all forms of heart disease. Cardiac fibroblasts and myofibroblasts are the main effectors of ECM deposition and scar formation. The heart is a complex multicellular organ, where the various resident cell types communicate between themselves and with cells of the blood and immune systems. Exosomes, which are small extracellular vesicles, (EVs), contribute to cell-to-cell communication and their pathophysiological relevance and therapeutic potential is emerging. Here, we will critically review the role of endogenous exosomes as possible fibrosis mediators and discuss the possibility of using stem cell-derived and/or engineered exosomes as anti-fibrotic agents. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Therapeutic Applications of Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessFeature PaperReview
Potential Applications of Extracellular Vesicles in Solid Organ Transplantation
Cells 2020, 9(2), 369; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9020369 - 05 Feb 2020
Cited by 3
Abstract
Extracellular vesicles (EVs) play an important role in cell-to-cell communication by delivering coding and non-coding RNA species and proteins to target cells. Recently, the therapeutic potential of EVs has been shown to extend to the field of solid organ transplantations. Mesenchymal stromal cell-derived [...] Read more.
Extracellular vesicles (EVs) play an important role in cell-to-cell communication by delivering coding and non-coding RNA species and proteins to target cells. Recently, the therapeutic potential of EVs has been shown to extend to the field of solid organ transplantations. Mesenchymal stromal cell-derived EVs (MSC-EVs) in particular have been proposed as a new tool to improve graft survival, thanks to the modulation of tolerance toward the graft, and to their anti-fibrotic and pro-angiogenic effects. Moreover, MSC-EVs may reduce ischemia reperfusion injury, improving the recovery from acute damage. In addition, EVs currently considered helpful tools for preserving donor organs when administered before transplant in the context of hypothermic or normothermic perfusion machines. The addition of EVs to the perfusion solution, recently proposed for kidney, lung, and liver grafts, resulted in the amelioration of donor organ viability and functionality. EVs may therefore be of therapeutic interest in different aspects of the transplantation process for increasing the number of available organs and improving their long-term survival. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Therapeutic Applications of Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessReview
Extracellular Vesicles for Cancer Therapy: Impact of Host Immune Response
Cells 2020, 9(1), 224; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9010224 - 16 Jan 2020
Cited by 2
Abstract
In recent times, extracellular vesicles (EVs) have come under the spotlight as potential therapeutics for cancer, due to the relative ease of manipulation of contents and potential for tumor targeting. The use of EVs as delivery vehicles may bypass some of the negative [...] Read more.
In recent times, extracellular vesicles (EVs) have come under the spotlight as potential therapeutics for cancer, due to the relative ease of manipulation of contents and potential for tumor targeting. The use of EVs as delivery vehicles may bypass some of the negative effects associated with cell-based carriers, and there has been a major focus on defining EV subtypes, establishing transparent nomenclature, and isolation and characterization techniques. EVs are believed to be a fingerprint of the secreting cell and so researchers harness the positive aspects of a particular cell of origin, and can then further modify EV contents to improve therapeutic efficacy. In this review, we highlight studies employing EVs as cancer therapeutics that have reported on immune response. As we rapidly advance towards potential application in the clinical setting, the question of immune response to EV administration in the cancer setting has become critically important. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Therapeutic Applications of Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessReview
Monitoring Therapy Efficiency in Cancer through Extracellular Vesicles
Cells 2020, 9(1), 130; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9010130 - 06 Jan 2020
Cited by 1
Abstract
Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are a heterogeneous group of membrane-enclosed vesicles made of a phospholipid bilayer and are secreted by all cell types. EVs are present in a variety of body fluids containing proteins, DNA, RNA species, and lipids, and play an important role [...] Read more.
Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are a heterogeneous group of membrane-enclosed vesicles made of a phospholipid bilayer and are secreted by all cell types. EVs are present in a variety of body fluids containing proteins, DNA, RNA species, and lipids, and play an important role in cell- to-cell communication and are worth being considered as biomarkers for both early diagnosis of cancer patients and real-time monitoring of treatment response. Recently, emerging evidence verified EVs to have crucial roles in cancer progression and metastasis and a great potential in therapeutic applications. In this review, we discuss the potential of EVs in monitoring the efficacy of cancer therapies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Therapeutic Applications of Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessReview
Extracellular Vesicles from Mesenchymal Stem Cells as Novel Treatments for Musculoskeletal Diseases
Cells 2020, 9(1), 98; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9010098 - 31 Dec 2019
Cited by 7
Abstract
Mesenchymal stem/stromal cells (MSCs) represent a promising therapy for musculoskeletal diseases. There is compelling evidence indicating that MSC effects are mainly mediated by paracrine mechanisms and in particular by the secretion of extracellular vesicles (EVs). Many studies have thus suggested that EVs may [...] Read more.
Mesenchymal stem/stromal cells (MSCs) represent a promising therapy for musculoskeletal diseases. There is compelling evidence indicating that MSC effects are mainly mediated by paracrine mechanisms and in particular by the secretion of extracellular vesicles (EVs). Many studies have thus suggested that EVs may be an alternative to cell therapy with MSCs in tissue repair. In this review, we summarize the current understanding of MSC EVs actions in preclinical studies of (1) immune regulation and rheumatoid arthritis, (2) bone repair and bone diseases, (3) cartilage repair and osteoarthritis, (4) intervertebral disk degeneration and (5) skeletal muscle and tendon repair. We also discuss the mechanisms underlying these actions and the perspectives of MSC EVs-based strategies for future treatments of musculoskeletal disorders. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Therapeutic Applications of Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessReview
Mesenchymal Stem Cell-Derived Exosomes and Other Extracellular Vesicles as New Remedies in the Therapy of Inflammatory Diseases
Cells 2019, 8(12), 1605; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells8121605 - 11 Dec 2019
Cited by 31
Abstract
There is growing evidence that mesenchymal stem cell (MSC)-based immunosuppression was mainly attributed to the effects of MSC-derived extracellular vesicles (MSC-EVs). MSC-EVs are enriched with MSC-sourced bioactive molecules (messenger RNA (mRNA), microRNAs (miRNAs), cytokines, chemokines, immunomodulatory factors) that regulate phenotype, function and homing [...] Read more.
There is growing evidence that mesenchymal stem cell (MSC)-based immunosuppression was mainly attributed to the effects of MSC-derived extracellular vesicles (MSC-EVs). MSC-EVs are enriched with MSC-sourced bioactive molecules (messenger RNA (mRNA), microRNAs (miRNAs), cytokines, chemokines, immunomodulatory factors) that regulate phenotype, function and homing of immune cells. In this review article we emphasized current knowledge regarding molecular mechanisms responsible for the therapeutic effects of MSC-EVs in attenuation of autoimmune and inflammatory diseases. We described the disease-specific cellular targets of MSC-EVs and defined MSC-sourced molecules, which were responsible for MSC-EV-based immunosuppression. Results obtained in a large number of experimental studies revealed that both local and systemic administration of MSC-EVs efficiently suppressed detrimental immune response in inflamed tissues and promoted survival and regeneration of injured parenchymal cells. MSC-EVs-based anti-inflammatory effects were relied on the delivery of immunoregulatory miRNAs and immunomodulatory proteins in inflammatory immune cells (M1 macrophages, dendritic cells (DCs), CD4+Th1 and Th17 cells), enabling their phenotypic conversion into immunosuppressive M2 macrophages, tolerogenic DCs and T regulatory cells. Additionally, through the delivery of mRNAs and miRNAs, MSC-EVs activated autophagy and/or inhibited apoptosis, necrosis and oxidative stress in injured hepatocytes, neurons, retinal cells, lung, gut and renal epithelial cells, promoting their survival and regeneration. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Therapeutic Applications of Extracellular Vesicles)
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Open AccessTechnical Note
A Novel Approach to Deliver Therapeutic Extracellular Vesicles Directly into the Mouse Kidney via Its Arterial Blood Supply
Cells 2020, 9(4), 937; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9040937 - 10 Apr 2020
Cited by 2
Abstract
Diseases of the kidney contribute a significant morbidity and mortality burden on society. Localized delivery of therapeutics directly into the kidney, via its arterial blood supply, has the potential to enhance their therapeutic efficacy while limiting side effects associated with conventional systemic delivery. [...] Read more.
Diseases of the kidney contribute a significant morbidity and mortality burden on society. Localized delivery of therapeutics directly into the kidney, via its arterial blood supply, has the potential to enhance their therapeutic efficacy while limiting side effects associated with conventional systemic delivery. Targeted delivery in humans is feasible given that we can access the renal arterial blood supply using minimally invasive endovascular techniques and imaging guidance. However, there is currently no described way to reproduce or mimic this approach in a small animal model. Here, we develop in mice a reproducible microsurgical technique for the delivery of therapeutics directly into each kidney, via its arterial blood supply. Using our technique, intra-arterially (IA) injected tattoo dye homogenously stained both kidneys, without staining any other organ. Survival studies showed no resulting mortality or iatrogenic kidney injury. We demonstrate the therapeutic potential of our technique in a mouse model of cisplatin-induced acute kidney injury (AKI). IA injection of mesenchymal stromal cell (MSC)-derived extracellular vesicles (EVs) successfully reversed AKI, with reduced physiological and molecular markers of kidney injury, attenuated inflammation, and restoration of proliferation and regeneration markers. This reproducible delivery technique will allow for further pre-clinical translational studies investigating other therapies for the treatment of renal pathologies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Therapeutic Applications of Extracellular Vesicles)
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