The Science: Exosomes (also called mesynchemal stem cell extracellular vesicles) are very small vesicles (40-100nm) with lipid membranes that contain transmembrane proteins from their parent cells. These proteins are important in regulating uptake by other cells. Exosomes are found throughout all cells in the body. They contain messenger RNA, micro RNA and protein. They do not contain DNA. Each exosome secretes between 200-300 proteins ranging from growth factors to anti-inflammatory cytokines. Exosomes have regenerative and immunomodulatory capabilities. The transmembrane protein receptors allow the exosomes to go to areas of injury and inflammation.
Conditions which may be aided by exosomes: Musculoskeletal, neurodegenerative, CNS injury/Trauma, Burns/scars/ulcers, Heart disease, Lung Disease, Liver Disease, Kidney Disease, Inflammatory Bowel Disease, Alopecia, Neuropathy, Erectile Dysfunction, Urinary Incontinence, Peripheral vascular disease, Cerebral Palsy/Seizure Disorders/Autism, Depression/Bipolar Disorder, Drug Addiction, Type II Diabetes, Aging, Auto-Immune diseases
Case Studies & Scholarly Articles
Some benefits of exosomes versus mesynchemal stem cells (the stem cells that you hear about that get taken from your fat or bone marrow) are that they can travel systemically throughout the body without clumping. They also do not get stuck in the lungs and they do cross the blood-brain barrier. As they do not contain DNA, there is no risk of malignant transformation.
We have stem cells that lie within niches throughout our body which are undifferentiated. Once activated they can proliferate and migrate to sites of injury where they become differentiated in order to facilitate repair and remodelling. Exosomes help to recruit and differentiate these stem cells in areas of damaged tissues.
During severe inflammatory and ischemic conditions such as strokes and heart attacks, cells lose ATP/NADH, experience oxidative stress and die. Exosomes contain all 5 enzymes in the ATP generating stage of glycolysis which have a protective effect on the mitochondria and improve mitochondrial fitness.
Studies have shown that benefits from exosomes peak at week 12 and will continue to effect the body up to 52 weeks.