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Biological properties of extracellular vesicles and their physiological functions

Yanez-Mo, Maria
Siljander, Pia R. -M.
Andreu, Zoraida
Zavec, Apolonija Bedina
Borras, Francesc E.
Buzas, Edit I.
Buzas, Krisztina
Casal, Enriqueta
Cappello, Francesco
Carvalho, Joana
Colas, Eva
Cordeiro-da Silva, Anabela
Fais, Stefano
Falcon-Perez, Juan M.
Ghobrial, Irene M.
Giebel, Bernd
Gimona, Mario
Graner, Michael
Gürsel, Mayda
Heegaard, Niels H. H.
Hendrix, An
Kierulf, Peter
Kokubun, Katsutoshi
Kosanovic, Maja
Kralj-Iglic, Veronika
Kraemer-Albers, Eva-Maria
Laitinen, Saara
Lasser, Cecilia
Lener, Thomas
Ligeti, Erzsebet
Line, Aija
Lipps, Georg
Llorente, Alicia
Lotvall, Jan
Mancek-Keber, Mateja
Marcilla, Antonio
Mittelbrunn, Maria
Nazarenko, Irina
Nolte-t' Hoen, Esther N. M.
Nyman, Tuula A.
O'Driscoll, Lorraine
Olivan, Mireia
Oliveira, Carla
Pallinger, Eva
del Portillo, Hernando A.
Reventos, Jaume
Rigau, Marina
Rohde, Eva
Sammar, Marei
Sanchez-Madrid, Francisco
Santarem, N.
Schallmoser, Katharina
Ostenfeld, Marie Stampe
Stoorvogel, Willem
Stukelj, Roman
Van der Grein, Susanne G.
Helena Vasconcelos, M.
Wauben, Marca H. M.
De Wever, Olivier
In the past decade, extracellular vesicles (EVs) have been recognized as potent vehicles of intercellular communication, both in prokaryotes and eukaryotes. This is due to their capacity to transfer proteins, lipids and nucleic acids, thereby influencing various physiological and pathological functions of both recipient and parent cells. While intensive investigation has targeted the role of EVs in different pathological processes, for example, in cancer and autoimmune diseases, the EV-mediated maintenance of homeostasis and the regulation of physiological functions have remained less explored. Here, we provide a comprehensive overview of the current understanding of the physiological roles of EVs, which has been written by crowd-sourcing, drawing on the unique EV expertise of academia-based scientists, clinicians and industry based in 27 European countries, the United States and Australia. This review is intended to be of relevance to both researchers already working on EV biology and to newcomers who will encounter this universal cell biological system. Therefore, here we address the molecular contents and functions of EVs in various tissues and body fluids from cell systems to organs. We also review the physiological mechanisms of EVs in bacteria, lower eukaryotes and plants to highlight the functional uniformity of this emerging communication system.