EXTRACELLULAR VESICLES IN ONCOLOGY: PROGRESS AND PITFALLS IN THE METHODS OF ISOLATION AND ANALYSIS.

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EXTRACELLULAR VESICLES IN ONCOLOGY: PROGRESS AND PITFALLS IN THE METHODS OF ISOLATION AND ANALYSIS.

Biotechnol J. 2018 Jun 07;:e1700716

Authors: Lucchetti D, Fattorossi A, Sgambato A

Abstract
Background The possibility to study solid tumors through the analysis of extracellular vesicles in biological fluids is one of the most exciting and rapidly advancing field in cancer research. The extracellular vesicles are tiny sacs released in both physiological and pathological conditions and could be used to monitor the evolution of several pathological states, including neoplastic diseases. Indeed, these vesicles carry biological informations and can affect the behavior of recipient cells by transferring proteins, DNA, RNA and microRNA. Purpose and scope In this review we analyze the methods to collect biological fluid samples (urine, plasma/serum and cell supernatant), and to isolate and quantify extracellular vesicles highlighting advantages and drawbacks. Moreover, we provide an overview on the adoption and the advantages of the methods (such as digital PCR, next generation sequencing, reverse-phase protein microarrays, flow-cytometry etc.) most frequently used to analyze the molecular content of extracellular vesicles. Summary of new synthesis and conclusions reached in the review Despite the great scientific interest on this topic, there is still a great uncertainty about which is the best method for the collection, isolation, quantification and molecular evaluation of these vesicles and a standardization is needed. Conclusions The features of EVs make them ideal candidates for liquid biopsy-based biomarkers. However, the small size of EVs makes their analysis very difficult and requires multiple advanced technologies, being therefore a limitation.

PMID: 29878510 [PubMed – as supplied by publisher]

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