Due to their intercellular communication properties and their involvement in a wide range of biological processes, extracellular vesicles (EVs) are increasingly being studied and exploited for different applications. Nevertheless, their complex nature and heterogeneity, as well as the challenges related to their isolation, purification and characterization procedures, require cautious assessment of the quality and quantity parameters to monitor. This translates into a multitude of choices and putative solutions that lie in front of any EV researcher, in both research and translational environments, resembling a labyrinth with multiple paths to cross and, possibly, more than one exit. In this respect, decision-making tools might represent our modern Ariadne’s string to follow not to get lost or distracted along the journey, to choose the shorter and best-fit-to-source EV application(s) and vice versa.
Researchers at HansaBioMed Life Sciences present the implementation of a multi-criteria EV decision-making grid (EV-DMG) as a novel, customizable, efficient and easy-to-use tool to support responsible EV research and innovation. By identifying and weighting key assessment criteria for comparing distinct EV-based preparations and/or processes, our EV-DMG may assist any EV community member in making informed, transparent and reproducible decisions regarding the EV sources and/or samples to be managed, as well as the most suitable production and/or analytical pipelines to be adopted for targeting a defined aim or application.
Proposed workflow for EV-DMG design and implementation