Extracellular vesicles round off communication in the nervous system

UMMS Affiliation

Department of Neurobiology; Budnik Lab



Document Type



Neuroscience and Neurobiology


Functional neural competence and integrity require interactive exchanges among sensory and motor neurons, interneurons and glial cells. Recent studies have attributed some of the tasks needed for these exchanges to extracellular vesicles (such as exosomes and microvesicles), which are most prominently involved in shuttling reciprocal signals between myelinating glia and neurons, thus promoting neuronal survival, the immune response mediated by microglia, and synapse assembly and plasticity. Such vesicles have also been identified as important factors in the spread of neurodegenerative disorders and brain cancer. These extracellular vesicle functions add a previously unrecognized level of complexity to transcellular interactions within the nervous system.

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Citation: Nat Rev Neurosci. 2016 Mar;17(3):160-72. doi: 10.1038/nrn.2015.29. Link to article on publisher's site

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