Exosomes in Allergic Airway Diseases

Academic Article


  • Purpose of Review: This review will cover what is known regarding exosomes and allergy, and furthermore discuss novel mechanism of exosome-mediated immune modulation and metabolic regulation via the transfer of mitochondria. Recent Findings: Exosomes are nano-sized extracellular vesicles (EVs) derived from the endosome that play a direct role in governing physiological and pathological conditions by transferring bioactive cargo such as proteins, enzymes, nucleic acids (miRNA, mRNA, DNA), and metabolites. Recent evidence suggest that exosomes may signal in autocrine but, most importantly, in paracrine and endocrine manner, being taken up by neighboring cells or carried to distant sites. Exosomes also mediate immunogenic responses, such as antigen presentation and inflammation. In asthma and allergy, exosomes facilitate cross-talk between immune and epithelial cells, and drive site-specific inflammation through the generation of pro-inflammatory mediators like leukotrienes. Recent studies suggest that myeloid cell-generated exosomes transfer mitochondria to lymphocytes. Summary: Exosomes are nano-sized mediators of the immune system which can modulate responses through antigen presentation, and the transfer of pro- and anti-inflammatory mediators. In addition to conventional mechanisms of immune modulation, exosomes may act as a novel courier of functional mitochondria that is capable of modulating the recipient cells bioenergetics, resulting in altered cellular responses. The transfer of mitochondria and modulation of bioenergetics may result in immune activation or dampening depending on the context.
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    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Hough KP; Deshane JS
  • Volume

  • 19
  • Issue

  • 5