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Exosomal Biomarker Development: Promises, Progress, Challenges

Exosomes have risen to eminence during the past couple of decades in terms of their potential as biomarkers of a variety of diseases and even as therapeutic agents. Exosomes are vesicles of around 100 nm diameter containing lipid bilayer membrane with biological contents typical of human cells except nuclei, and secreted by human cells as part of their routine biogenesis. The lipid membrane protects the content from degradation by enzymes in common body fluids allowing for their much longer transport range. This unique characteristic combined with their demonstrated propensity of fuse with target cells through endocytosis serve as one of the channels in cell-cell communication including cancer metastasis.

The understanding of exosomes including the classification of these extracellular vesicles have come a long way since they come under the spotlight of the biomedical community. Despite of the progress, many of their biological, chemical and physical properties are still being discovered. With the inherent biological heterogeneity, questions such as if the commonly employed, size-based isolation indeed groups EVs with similar biological functionality, the quantitative measure of the size heterogeneity, and the fundamental biology pertaining to their diagnostic as well as therapeutic potential, remain to be understood.  

In this talk, we discuss the topic of EV isolation with a focus on the most popular method of size exclusion chromatography and the challenges in characterizing their size distribution. Additionally, Ya-Hong Xie from UCLA will share his perspective of how this line of research could lead to deepening our understanding of exosomal biology pertaining to their diagnostic and therapeutic promises. 

Speaker Bio: 
Ya-Hong Xie is a professor of the department of materials science and engineering at the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA). Prior to joining the UCLA faculty in 1999, he spent 14 years at Bell Laboratories conducting research on semiconductor materials and devices.

ViewSizer 3000
ViewSizer 3000

Simultaneous Multi-Laser Nanoparticle Tracking Analysis (NTA)

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