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    Exosomes

    Exosomes are small membrane vesicles (30–150 nm) of endocytic origin, All cells secret them constantly under both healthy and pathological conditions and they can be found in various body fluids including blood, saliva, urine, semen, bile, ascites, and gastrointestinal lavage fluid. Exosomes can contain proteins, nucleic acids (DNA fragments as well as microRNAs, long-noncoding RNAs, intact and mutated mRNAs), lipids and various other metabolites (amino acids, sugars, etc.)

    Exosomes are a central mechanism of cell signaling (autocrine, paracrine, endocrine and juxtracrine), and have recently been found to play a central role in cancer progression, angiogenesis, immune suppression and metastasis. Furthermore, they have been found to contain many potential disease specific biomarkers, as well as treatment prognosis. Other research efforts have sought to exploit the natural biomolecule carrier trait of exosomes for drug delivery purposes.

    It is no wonder that many labs are seeking optimal exosome isolation methods to secure the best yield, reproducibility and purity. The classical ultracentrifugation method can now be supplemented or exchanged by commercial kits based on various principles including:

    • charge neutralization-based precipitation
    • gel-filtration
    • affinity purification using magnetic beads

    Confusingly, no single method appears to be universally superior in every parameter, with differences in yield, purity and integrity of the isolated exosomes lending different methods and kits to different applications.

    Are you deliberating which exosome purification assay will best suit your needs? Or are you looking for a reliable exosome biomarker assay? Either way, contact Merkel today. Not only will we present you with all of our options, we will also be able to save you valuable time by advising you on the option best suited for the unique needs (and budget…) of your lab, giving you the extra edge you need to outscoop the competition!

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