Extracellular vesicles of the blood-brain barrier

Extracellular vesicles (ECV), like exosomes, gained recently a lot of attention as potentially playing a significant role in neurodegenerative diseases, particularly in Aβ pathology. While there are a lot of reports on ECV/exosomes derived from a variety of cell types, there is limited information on ECV/exosomes originated from brain microvascular endothelial cells forming the blood-brain barrier (BBB).

Researchers from the University of Miami School of Medicine propose that ECV/exosome release from brain endothelial cells associated with Aβ affects different cells of the neurovascular unit and may be an important contributor to the Aβ deposition in the central nervous system.

Extracellular vesicles from human brain microvascular endothelial cells (HBMEC)


(A) Live fluorescence imaging of HBMEC transiently transfected with pT-CYTO-RFP and pT-CD63-GFP to visualize the brain endothelial cell (red) secreting green fluorescent CD63 positive extracellular vesicles (ECV). Scale bar: 2 μm. (B) HBMEC were transiently transfected with pT-CD63 GFP or pT-CD9 RFP. ECV were isolated from the cell culture media. Fluorescence microscopy images of isolated fluorescent ECV (CD63 GFP-green, upper panel; CD9 RFP-red, lower panel). Scale bar: 20 μm. (C) Differential interference contrast (DIC) image of isolated ECV. Scale bar: 2 μm.

András IE, Toborek M. (2016) Extracellular vesicles of the blood-brain barrier. Tissue Barriers 4(1):e1131804. [article]

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