Extracellular vesicles (EV) are small membrane-bound vesicles enriched in a selective repertoire of mRNA, miRNA, proteins and cell surface receptors from parental cells and are actively involved in the transmission of inter and intracellular signals.
Cancer cells produce EV that contain cargo including DNA, mRNA, miRNA and proteins that allow EV to create epigenetic changes in target cells both locally and systemically. Cancer-derived EV play critical roles in tumorigenesis, cancer cell migration, metastasis, evasion of host immune defense, chemoresistance, and they promote a premetastatic niche favourable to micrometastatic seeding. Their unique molecular profiles acquired from originator cells and their presence in numerous body fluids, including blood and urine, make them promising candidates as biomarkers for prostate, renal and bladder cancers. EV may ultimately serve as targets for therapy and as platforms for personalized medicine in urology. As urologic malignancy comprises 28% of new solid tumour diagnoses and 15% of cancer-related deaths, EV-related research is rapidly emerging and providing unique insights into disease progression. In this report, we review the current literature on EV in the setting of genitourinary fertility and malignancy.
J Extracell Vesicles. 2015 Jun 30;4:23815. doi: 10.3402/jev.v4.23815. eCollection 2015.
Tompkins AJ1, Chatterjee D2, Maddox M1, Wang J3, Arciero E3, Camussi G4, Quesenberry PJ3, Renzulli JF1.
1 Division of Urology, Department of Surgery, The Miriam Hospital and The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University, Providence, RI, USA.
2 Division of Hematology/Oncology, Department of Medicine, Rhode Island Hospital and The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University, Providence, RI, USA.
3 Division of Hematology/Oncology, Department of Medicine, Rhode Island Hospital and The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University, Providence, RI, USA.
4 Department of Internal Medicine, Faculty of Medicine and School of Biotechnology, University of Torino, Torino, Italy.