Biochemistry (Moscow)

, Volume 78, Issue 1, pp 1–7 | Cite as

Nucleic acids in exosomes: Disease markers and intercellular communication molecules

  • O. N. GusachenkoEmail author
  • M. A. Zenkova
  • V. V. Vlassov


The term “exosomes” is currently used to describe specific vesicular structures of endosomal origin produced by the majority of eukaryotic cells. These natural vesicles have been under study for more than two decades. Nevertheless, a real splash of scientific interest in studies on exosomes took place only during recent years, when the concept of the role and functions of exosomes in multicellular organisms was essentially reconsidered. The major role in this was played by the discovery of exosomal mRNA and miRNA in 2007, which stimulated the idea of regulatory and communicative role of exosomes in the organism and also encouraged considering exosomes and other vesicles as potential biomarkers. The present review summarizes the up to date knowledge on the composition and probable physiological functions of nucleic acids released by different cells as components of exosomes. We also touch upon the problem of using these data in clinical diagnosis.

Key words

exosomes microvesicles extracellular nucleic acids biomarkers intercellular communication miRNA mRNA 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Fevrier, B., and Raposo, G. (2004) Curr. Opin. Cell Biol., 16, 415–421.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Lotvall, J., and Valadi, H. (2007) Cell Adh. Migr., 1, 156–158.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Simpson, R. J., Lim, J. W., Moritz, R. L., and Mathivanan, S. (2009) Expert Rev. Proteomics, 6, 267–283.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Admyre, C., Telemo, E., Almqvist, N., Lotvall, J., Lahesmaa, R., Scheynius, A., and Gabrielsson, S. (2008) Allergy, 63, 404–408.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Pan, B. T., and Johnstone, R. M. (1983) Cell, 33, 967–978.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Pan, B. T., Teng, K., Wu, C., Adam, M., and Johnstone, R. M. (1985) J. Cell Biol., 101, 942–948.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Raposo, G., Nijman, H. W., Stoorvogel, W., Liejendekker, R., Harding, C. V., Melief, C. J., and Geuze, H. J. (1996) J. Exp. Med., 183, 1161–1172.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Valadi, H., Ekstrom, K., Bossios, A., Sjostrand, M., Lee, J. J., and Lotvall, J. O. (2007) Nat. Cell Biol., 9, 654–959.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Thery, C. (2011) F1000 Biol. Reports, 3, 15.Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Ambros, V. (2004) Nature, 431, 350–355.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Ratajczak, J., Miekus, K., Kucia, M., Zhang, J., Reca, R., Dvorak, P., and Ratajczak, M. Z. (2006) Leukemia, 20, 847–856.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Chen, X., Liang, H., Zhang, J., Zen, K., and Zhang, C.-Y. (2012) Protein & Cell, 3, 28–37.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Mathivanan, S., Ji, H., and Simpson, R. J. (2010) J. Proteomics, 73, 1907–1920.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Thery, C., Amigorena, S., Raposo, G., and Clayton, A. (2006) in Current Protocols in Cell Biology (Chambers, C., ed.) John Wiley and Sons, Ltd., Chap. 3, Unit 3.22.Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Ji, H., Erfani, N., Tauro, B. J., Kapp, E. A., Zhu, H. J., Moritz, R. L., Lim, J. W., and Simpson, R. J. (2008) Electrophoresis, 29, 2660–2671.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Lamparski, H. G., Metha-Damani, A., Yao, J. Y., Patel, S., Hsu, D. H., Ruegg, C., and Le Pecq, J. B. (2002) J. Immunol. Methods, 270, 211–226.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Cheruvanky, A., Zhou, H., Pisitkun, T., Kopp, J. B., Knepper, M. A., Yuen, P. S. T., and Star, R. A. (2007) Am. J. Physiol. Renal Physiol., 292, 1657–1661.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Chen, C., Skog, J., Hsu, C. H., Lessard, R. T., Balaj, L., Wurdinger, T., Carter, B. S., Breakefield, X. O., Toner, M., and Irimia, D. (2010) Lab. Chip., 10, 505–511.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Conde-Vancells, J., Rodriguez-Suarez, E., Embade, N., Gil, D., Matthiesen, R., Valle, M., Elortza, F., Lu, S. C., Mato, J. M., and Falcon-Perez, J. M. (2008) J. Proteome Res., 7, 5157–5166.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    Kesimer, M., Scull, M., Brighton, B., De Maria, G., Burns, K., O’Neal, W., Pickles, R. J., and Sheehan, J. K. (2009) FASEB J., 23, 1858–1868.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. 21.
    Ohshima, K., Inoue, K., Fujiwara, A., Hatakeyama, K., Kanto, K., Watanabe, Y., Muramatsu, K., Fukuda, Y., Ogura, S., Yamaguchi, K., and Mochizuki, T. (2010) PloS ONE, 5, e13247.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. 22.
    Nazarenko, I., Rana, S., Baumann, A., McAlear, J., Hellwig, A., Trendelenburg, M., Lochnit, G., Preissner, K. T., and Zoller, M. (2010) Cancer Res., 70, 1668–1678.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. 23.
    Mittelbrunn, M., Gutierrez-Vazquez, C., Villarroya-Beltri, C., Gonzalez, S., Sanchez-Cabo, F., Gonzalez, M. A., Bernad, A., and Sanchez-Madrid, F. (2011) Nat. Commun., 2, 282, ncomms1285.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. 24.
    Rupp, A.-K., Rupp, C., Keller, S., Brase, J. C., Ehehalt, R., Fogel, M., Moldenhauer, G., Marme, F., Sultmann, H., and Altevogt, P. (2011) Gynecol. Oncol., 122, 437–446.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. 25.
    Lasser, C., Alikhani, V. S., Ekstrom, K., Eldh, M., Paredes, P. T., Bossios, A., Sjostrand, M., Gabrielsson, S., Lotvall, J., and Valadi, H. (2011) J. Translat. Med., 9, 9.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. 26.
    Batagov, A. O., Kuznetsov, V. A., and Kurochkin, I. V. (2011) BioMed Central Ltd, 12, 18.Google Scholar
  27. 27.
    Taylor, D. D., and Gercel-Taylor, C. (2008) Gynecol. Oncol., 110, 13–21.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. 28.
    Rabinowits, G., Gercel-Taylor, C., Day, J. M., Taylor, D. D., and Kloecker, G. H. (2009) Clin. Lung Cancer, 10, 42–46.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. 29.
    Lee, Y. S., Pressman, S., Andress, A. P., Kim, K., White, J. L., Cassidy, J., Li, X., Lubell, K., Lim, D. H., Cho, I. S., Nakahara, K., Preall, J. B., Bellare, P., Sontheimer, E. J., and Carthew, R. W. (2010) Nat. Cell Biol., 11, 1150–1156.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. 30.
    Gibbings, D. J., Ciaudo, C., Erhardt, M., and Voinnet, O. (2009) Nat. Cell Biol., 11, 1143–1149.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. 31.
    Kosaka, N., and Ochiya, T. (2011) Frontiers Genetics, 2, 97.Google Scholar
  32. 32.
    Montecalvo, A., Larregina, A. T., Shufesky, W. J., Stolz, D. B., Sullivan, M. L., Karlsson, J. M., Baty, C. J., Gibson, G. A., Erdos, G., Wang, Z., Milosevic, J., Tkacheva, O. A., Divito, S. J., Jordan, R., Lyons-Weiler, J., Watkins, S. C., and Morelli, A. E. (2012) Blood, 119, 756–766.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. 33.
    Alvarez-Erviti, L., Seow, Y., Yin, H., Betts, C., Lakhal, S., and Wood, M. J. A. (2011) Nature Biotechnol., 29, 341–345.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. 34.
    Bang, C., Dangwal, S., Zeug, A., and Thum, T. (2012) Materials of 2012 ISEV Meeting, Goteborg, Sweden, 2012.Google Scholar
  35. 35.
    Luo, S. S., Ishibashi, O., Ishikawa, G., Ishikawa, T., Katayama, A., Mishima, T., Takizawa, T., Shigihara, T., Goto, T., Izumi, A., Ohkuchi, A., Matsubara, S., Takeshita, T., and Takizawa, T. (2009) Biol. Reprod., 81, 717–729.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. 36.
    Zhou, Q., Li, M., Wang, X., Li, Q., Wang, T., Zhu, Q., Zhou, X., Wang, X., Gao, X., and Li, X. (2012) Int. J. Biol. Sci., 8, 118–123.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. 37.
    Skog, J., Wurdinger, T., van Rijn, S., Meijer, D. H., Gainche, L., Sena-Esteves, M., Curry, W. T., Carter, B. S., Krichevsky, A. M., and Breakefield, X. O. (2008) Nat. Cell Biol., 10, 1470–1476.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. 38.
    Pegtel, D. M., Van De Garde, M. D. B., and Middeldorp, J. M. (2011) Biochim. Biophys. Acta, 1809, 715–721.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. 39.
    Pegtel, D. M., Cosmopoulos, K., Thorley-Lawson, D. A., van Eijndhoven, M. A. J., Hopmans, E. S., Lindenberg, J. L., de Gruijl, T. D., Wurdinger, T., and Middeldorp, J. M. (2010) Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA, 107, 6328–6333.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. 40.
    Turchinovich, A., Weiz, L., Langheinz, A., and Burwinkel, B. (2011) Nucleic Acids Res., 39, 7223–7233.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. 41.
    Michael, A., Bajracharya, S. D., Yuen, P. S., Zhou, H., Star, R. A., Illei, G. G., and Alevizos, I. (2010) Oral Dis., 16, 34–38.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. 42.
    Nilsson, J., Skog, J., Nordstrand, A., Baranov, V., Mincheva-Nilsson, L., Breakefield, X. O., and Widmark, A. (2009) Brit. J. Cancer, 100, 1603–1607.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. 43.
    Gilad, S., Meiri, E., Yogev, Y., Benjamin, S., Lebanony, D., Yerushalmi, N., Benjamin, H., Kushnir, M., Cholakh, H., Melamed, N., Bentwich, Z., Hod, M., Goren, Y., and Chajut, A. (2008) PLoS ONE, 3, e3148.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Pleiades Publishing, Ltd. 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • O. N. Gusachenko
    • 1
    Email author
  • M. A. Zenkova
    • 1
  • V. V. Vlassov
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Chemical Biology and Fundamental MedicineSiberian Branch of the Russian Academy of SciencesNovosibirskRussia

Personalised recommendations