Nano pom-poms prepared exosomes enable highly specific cancer biomarker detection

Extracellular vesicles (EVs), particularly nano-sized small EV exosomes, are emerging biomarker sources. However, due to heterogeneous populations secreted from diverse cell types, mapping exosome multi-omic molecular information specifically to their pathogenesis origin for cancer biomarker identification is still extraordinarily challenging.

Researchers at the University of Kansas have developed a novel 3D-structured nanographene immunomagnetic particles (NanoPoms) with unique flower pom-poms morphology and photo-click chemistry for specific marker-defined capture and release of intact exosome. This specific exosome isolation approach leads to the expanded identification of targetable cancer biomarkers with enhanced specificity and sensitivity, as demonstrated by multi-omic exosome analysis of bladder cancer patient tissue fluids using the next generation sequencing of somatic DNA mutations, miRNAs, and the global proteome. The NanoPoms prepared exosomes also exhibit distinctive in vivo biodistribution patterns, highlighting the highly viable and integral quality. The developed method is simple and straightforward, which is applicable to nearly all types of biological fluids and amenable for enrichment, scale up, and high-throughput exosome isolation.

Nano pom-poms fabrication for highly specific
exosome isolation and multi-omic biomarker analysis

Fig. 1

a Schematic illustration of the fabrication of Nano pom poms. b TEM and SEM images showing the unique 3D nano-scale flower pom-poms morphology compared to commercial immunomagnetic beads. c The immune gold nanoparticle staining TEM imaging of captured exosomes fully covering Nano pom-poms surface. Captured EVs are confirmed by antiCD63 gold nanoparticles. The insert shows the captured single exosomes in the size range of ~100 nm with three gold nanoparticles bound (~10 nm). d Nanoparticle tracking analysis of NanoPoms isolated exosomes with much narrower size distribution in comparison with UC isolated EVs. e Nanoparticle tracking analysis of the size of NanoPoms isolated exosomes (n = 4 independent experiments, mean ± SD), compared with ExoEasy isolation (n = 4 independent experiments, mean ± SD), which showed reproducible and smaller size of exosomes from NanoPoms preparation. f SEM images showing the dense exosomes are captured covering the surface of Nano pom-poms, and can be completely released via on-demand photo-cleavage. After release, intact exosomes can be harvested for downstream multi-omic analysis including next generation sequencing of DNAs, RNAs, western blotting and proteomic analysis, as well as in vivo study.

He N, Thippabhotla S, Zhong C, Greenberg Z, Xu L, Pessetto Z, Godwin AK, Zeng Y, He M. (2022) Nano pom-poms prepared exosomes enable highly specific cancer biomarker detection. Commun Biol 5(1):660. [article]

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