Isolation and characterisation of exosomes from Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cells

Exosomes have previously been isolated from Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cells and their anti-apoptotic properties reported. However, to further facilitate the study of CHO cell derived exosomes and allow their comparison across studies, it is necessary to characterise and define such exosomes using at least three criteria that can act as a reference for the generation of CHO cell produced exosomes. Researchers from the University of Kent report on the isolation of exosomes from CHO cells, an industrially relevant and widely used cell host for biopharmaceutical protein production, during the exponential and stationary phase of growth during batch culture using a Total Exosome Isolation (TEI) method. The resulting vesicles were characterized and visualized using a diverse range of techniques including Dynamic Light Scattering (DLS), Zeta potential, Electron Microscopy and immunoblotting, and their protein and RNA content determined. The researchers also generated the lipid fingerprint of isolated exosomes using MALDI-ToF mass spectroscopy. They confirmed the presence of nano sized extracellular vesicles from CHO cells and their subsequent characterization revealed details of their size, homogeneity, surface charge, protein and RNA content. The lipid content of exosomes was also found to differ between exosomes isolated on different days of batch culture. This analysis provides a profile and characterisation of CHO cell exosomes to aid future studies on exosomes from CHO cells and improving the manufacturing of exosomes for biotherapeutic application.

Electron microscopy images of exosome enriched preparations from CHO–S cells
harvested at Day 3 (A) or Day 5 (B and C) of batch culture

The bar shows 100 nm

Skrika-Alexopoulos E, Mark Smales C. (2023) Isolation and characterisation of exosomes from Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cells. Biotechnol Lett [Epub ahead of print]. [article]

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