Extracellular vesicles offer new insights into treating endocrine disorders

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In a new Scientific Statement released today, the Endocrine Society describes the importance of extracellular vesicles as a new research target for understanding the causes of certain endocrine disorders such as cancer and diabetes and discovering new treatments for these disorders.

During the last decade, endocrine researchers have shown great interest in extracellular vesicles and their hormone-like role in cell-to-cell communication. The statement provides insight into the functions of extracellular vesicles, which are secreted from all cells into biological fluids and carry endocrine signals that allow interactions between cells and distant sites in the body.

"We're really excited about this new area of research that can help us better understand how people develop common endocrine conditions such as diabetes, obesity and cancer," said Carlos Salomon Ph.D., D.Med.Sc., M.Sc., B.Sc., Associate Professor of The University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia. "The statement highlights the likely uses of extracellular vesicles in detecting and monitoring disease progression and their role as next-generation drug delivery vehicles."

Extracellular vesicles can help researchers better understand how to diagnose endocrine-related conditions including cancer and predict its progression. The role of extracellular vesicles as a cancer biomarker may extend to predicting real-time response to therapy.

Extracellular vesicles are also involved in understanding the cause and treatment of diabetes, obesity and heart disease. Recent studies have shown the potential of extracellular vesicles, particularly ones derived from stem cells, in treating diabetes. Research into the vesicles provides insights into the causes of insulin resistance and glucose intolerance in obesity.

Extracellular vesicles play an important role in the development of heart disease and could be useful for predicting risk. They also serve as biomarkers for and could have a therapeutic and blood pressure-lowering role.

"We hope this statement brings awareness to the significance of in endocrinology and encourages more research on their potential as biomarkers and therapeutics," Salomon said.

The research was published in Endocrine Reviews.

More information: Carlos Salomon et al, Extracellular Vesicles and Their Emerging Roles as Cellular Messengers in Endocrinology: An Endocrine Society Scientific Statement, Endocrine Reviews (2022). DOI: 10.1210/endrev/bnac009

Citation: Extracellular vesicles offer new insights into treating endocrine disorders (2022, April 21) retrieved 18 July 2024 from https://medicalxpress.com/news/2022-04-extracellular-vesicles-insights-endocrine-disorders.html
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