Rapid and unbiased enrichment of extracellular vesicles via meticulously engineered peptide

Extracellular vesicles (EVs) have garnered significant attention in biomedical applications, particularly as biomarkers and therapeutic agents for cancer diagnosis and treatment. However, the rapid, efficient, and unbiased separation of EVs from complex biological fluids remains a challenge due to their heterogeneity and low abundance concentration in biofluids. Researchers from the Huazhong University of Science and Technology have developed a novel approach to reconfigure and modify an artificial insertion peptide for the rapid isolation of EVs in 20 min with ∼ 80% recovery. By inserting the peptide into the phospholipid bilayer of EVs, this method enables the unbiased isolation of EVs. Moreover, this approach demonstrates exceptional anti-interference capability and achieves a high purity of EVs comparable to standard ultracentrifugation and other methods. Importantly, the researchers show that the isolated EVs could be directly applied for downstream protein and nucleic acids analyses, including proteomics analysis, exome sequencing analysis, as well as the detection of EGFR and KRAS gene mutation in clinical plasma samples. This approach offers new possibilities for utilizing EVs in cancer diagnostics through liquid biopsy, as well as in various other biomedical applications.

Scheme of the BAIP-based EVs enrichment and downstream analyses

a, Scheme of capture of EVs with the BAIP-based method. b, Scheme of the extraction of cargo RNA contents from isolated EVs and the subsequent RNA quantification, mRNA detection and RNA agarose electrophoresis characterization. c, Scheme of the protein analysis, such SDS-PAGE, Western blotting, enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) and LC-MS/MS. d, Scheme of the DNA analysis, such as DNA electrophoresis characterization, WES, sanger sequencing and qPCR for DNA mutation detection.

Wang L, Gong Z, Wang M et al. (2023) Rapid and unbiased enrichment of extracellular vesicles via meticulously engineered peptide. bioRXiv [Epub ahead of print]. [article]

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