All living cells on earth release extracellular vesicles having pleiotropic functions in intercellular communication into the surroundings. Mammalian extracellular vesicles, also known as exosomes and microvesicles, are spherical bilayered proteolipids composed of various bioactive molecules, including RNAs, DNAs, proteins, and lipids. Extracellular vesicles directly and indirectly control a diverse range of biological processes by transferring membrane proteins, signaling molecules, mRNAs, and miRNAs and activating receptors of recipient cells. The active interaction of extracellular vesicles with other cells regulates various physiological and pathological conditions, including cancer, infectious diseases and neurodegenerative disorders. Recent development on high-throughput proteomic, transcriptomic, and lipidomic tools has provided ample data on the common and specific components of various types of extracellular vesicles. These studies may contribute to the understanding of the molecular mechanism involved in vesicular cargo-sorting and biogenesis of extracellular vesicles, and further, to the identification of disease-specific biomarkers. This review focuses on the components, functions, as well as the therapeutic and diagnostic potential of extracellular vesicles under various pathophysiological conditions.
Extracellular vesicles as emerging intercellular communicasomes
Yoon YJ, Kim OY, Gho YS. (2014) Extracellular vesicles as emerging intercellular communicasomes. BMB Rep [Epub ahead of print]. [abstract]