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      Isolation of Extracellular Vesicles: General Methodologies and Latest Trends


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          Extracellular vesicles (EVs) play an essential role in the communication between cells and transport of diagnostically significant molecules. A wide diversity of approaches utilizing different biochemical properties of EVs and a lack of accepted protocols make data interpretation very challenging.

          Scope of Review

          This review consolidates the data on the classical and state-of-the-art methods for isolation of EVs, including exosomes, highlighting the advantages and disadvantages of each method. Various characteristics of individual methods, including isolation efficiency, EV yield, properties of isolated EVs, and labor consumption are compared.

          Major Conclusions

          A mixed population of vesicles is obtained in most studies of EVs for all used isolation methods. The properties of an analyzed sample should be taken into account when planning an experiment aimed at studying and using these vesicles. The problem of adequate EVs isolation methods still remains; it might not be possible to develop a universal EV isolation method but the available protocols can be used towards solving particular types of problems.

          General Significance

          With the wide use of EVs for diagnosis and therapy of various diseases the evaluation of existing methods for EV isolation is one of the key problems in modern biology and medicine.

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          Most cited references 85

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          Comparison of ultracentrifugation, density gradient separation, and immunoaffinity capture methods for isolating human colon cancer cell line LIM1863-derived exosomes.

          Exosomes are 40-100nm extracellular vesicles that are released from a multitude of cell types, and perform diverse cellular functions including intercellular communication, antigen presentation, and transfer of oncogenic proteins as well as mRNA and miRNA. Exosomes have been purified from biological fluids and in vitro cell cultures using a variety of strategies and techniques. However, all preparations invariably contain varying proportions of other membranous vesicles that co-purify with exosomes such as shed microvesicles and apoptotic blebs. Using the colorectal cancer cell line LIM1863 as a cell model, in this study we performed a comprehensive evaluation of current methods used for exosome isolation including ultracentrifugation (UC-Exos), OptiPrep™ density-based separation (DG-Exos), and immunoaffinity capture using anti-EpCAM coated magnetic beads (IAC-Exos). Notably, all isolations contained 40-100nm vesicles, and were positive for exosome markers (Alix, TSG101, HSP70) based on electron microscopy and Western blotting. We employed a proteomic approach to profile the protein composition of exosomes, and label-free spectral counting to evaluate the effectiveness of each method. Based on the number of MS/MS spectra identified for exosome markers and proteins associated with their biogenesis, trafficking, and release, we found IAC-Exos to be the most effective method to isolate exosomes. For example, Alix, TSG101, CD9 and CD81 were significantly higher (at least 2-fold) in IAC-Exos, compared to UG-Exos and DG-Exos. Application of immunoaffinity capture has enabled the identification of proteins including the ESCRT-III component VPS32C/CHMP4C, and the SNARE synaptobrevin 2 (VAMP2) in exosomes for the first time. Additionally, several cancer-related proteins were identified in IAC-Exos including various ephrins (EFNB1, EFNB2) and Eph receptors (EPHA2-8, EPHB1-4), and components involved in Wnt (CTNNB1, TNIK) and Ras (CRK, GRB2) signalling. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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            Proteomic analysis of dendritic cell-derived exosomes: a secreted subcellular compartment distinct from apoptotic vesicles.

            Dendritic cells constitutively secrete a population of small (50-90 nm diameter) Ag-presenting vesicles called exosomes. When sensitized with tumor antigenic peptides, dendritic cells produce exosomes, which stimulate anti-tumor immune responses and the rejection of established tumors in mice. Using a systematic proteomic approach, we establish the first extensive protein map of a particular exosome population; 21 new exosomal proteins were thus identified. Most proteins present in exosomes are related to endocytic compartments. New exosomal residents include cytosolic proteins most likely involved in exosome biogenesis and function, mainly cytoskeleton-related (cofilin, profilin I, and elongation factor 1alpha) and intracellular membrane transport and signaling factors (such as several annexins, rab 7 and 11, rap1B, and syntenin). Importantly, we also identified a novel category of exosomal proteins related to apoptosis: thioredoxin peroxidase II, Alix, 14-3-3, and galectin-3. These findings led us to analyze possible structural relationships between exosomes and microvesicles released by apoptotic cells. We show that although they both represent secreted populations of membrane vesicles relevant to immune responses, exosomes and apoptotic vesicles are biochemically and morphologically distinct. Therefore, in addition to cytokines, dendritic cells produce a specific population of membrane vesicles, exosomes, with unique molecular composition and strong immunostimulating properties.
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              Extracellular vesicle isolation and characterization: toward clinical application.

              Two broad categories of extracellular vesicles (EVs), exosomes and shed microvesicles (sMVs), which differ in size distribution as well as protein and RNA profiles, have been described. EVs are known to play key roles in cell-cell communication, acting proximally as well as systemically. This Review discusses the nature of EV subtypes, strategies for isolating EVs from both cell-culture media and body fluids, and procedures for quantifying EVs. We also discuss proteins selectively enriched in exosomes and sMVs that have the potential for use as markers to discriminate between EV subtypes, as well as various applications of EVs in clinical diagnosis.

                Author and article information

                Biomed Res Int
                Biomed Res Int
                BioMed Research International
                30 January 2018
                : 2018
                1Institute of Chemical Biology and Fundamental Medicine, Siberian Branch, Russian Academy of Sciences, Novosibirsk 630090, Russia
                2Meshalkin Siberian Federal Biomedical Research Center, Ministry of Public Health of the Russian Federation, Novosibirsk 630055, Russia
                Author notes

                Academic Editor: Adriano Casulli

                Copyright © 2018 Maria Yu. Konoshenko et al.

                This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

                Funded by: Russian Science Foundation
                Award ID: 16-15-00124
                Review Article


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