Publications by authors named "Dominik Buschmann"

21 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Preconceptional smoking alters spermatozoal miRNAs of murine fathers and affects offspring's body weight.

Int J Obes (Lond) 2021 May 17. Epub 2021 May 17.

Early Life Origins of Chronic Lung Disease, Research Center Borstel, Leibniz Lung Center, German Center for Lung Research (DZL), Borstel, Germany.

Background: Active smoking has been reported among 7% of teenagers worldwide, with ages ranging from 13 to 15 years. An epidemiological study suggested that preconceptional paternal smoking is associated with adolescent obesity in boys. We developed a murine adolescent smoking model before conception to investigate the paternal molecular causes of changes in offspring's phenotype.

Method: Male and female C57BL/6J mice were exposed to increasing doses of mainstream cigarette smoke (CS) from onset of puberty for 6 weeks and mated with room air (RA) controls.

Results: Thirteen miRNAs were upregulated and 32 downregulated in the spermatozoa of CS-exposed fathers, while there were no significant differences in the count and morphological integrity of spermatozoa, as well as the proliferation of spermatogonia between CS- and RA-exposed fathers. Offspring from preconceptional CS-exposed mothers had lower body weights (p = 0.007). Moreover, data from offspring from CS-exposed fathers suggested a potential increase in body weight (p = 0.062).

Conclusion: We showed that preconceptional paternal CS exposure regulates spermatozoal miRNAs, and possibly influences the body weight of F1 progeny in early life. The regulated miRNAs may modulate transmittable epigenetic changes to offspring, thus influence the development of respiratory- and metabolic-related diseases such as obesity, a mechanism that warrants further studies for elaborate explanations.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41366-021-00798-2DOI Listing
May 2021

Separation, characterization, and standardization of extracellular vesicles for drug delivery applications.

Adv Drug Deliv Rev 2021 Jul 5;174:348-368. Epub 2021 May 5.

Department of Internal Medicine, University of Michigan Medical School, Ann Arbor, MI, USA.

Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are membranous nanovesicles secreted from living cells, shuttling macromolecules in intercellular communication and potentially possessing intrinsic therapeutic activity. Due to their stability, low immunogenicity, and inherent interaction with recipient cells, EVs also hold great promise as drug delivery vehicles. Indeed, they have been used to deliver nucleic acids, proteins, and small molecules in preclinical investigations. Furthermore, EV-based drugs have entered early clinical trials for cancer or neurodegenerative diseases. Despite their appeal as delivery vectors, however, EV-based drug delivery progress has been hampered by heterogeneity of sample types and methods as well as a persistent lack of standardization, validation, and comprehensive reporting. This review highlights specific requirements for EVs in drug delivery and describes the most pertinent approaches for separation and characterization. Despite residual uncertainties related to pharmacodynamics, pharmacokinetics, and potential off-target effects, clinical-grade, high-potency EV drugs might be achievable through GMP-compliant workflows in a highly standardized environment.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.addr.2021.04.027DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8217305PMC
July 2021

Impact of DNA repair and reactive oxygen species levels on radioresistance in pancreatic cancer.

Radiother Oncol 2021 06 9;159:265-276. Epub 2021 Apr 9.

Institute of Radiation Medicine (IRM), Department of Radiation Sciences (DRS), Helmholtz Zentrum München, Neuherberg, Germany; Department of Radiation Oncology, School of Medicine, Klinikum rechts der Isar, Technical University of Munich (TUM), Germany; Deutsches Konsortium für Translationale Krebsforschung (DKTK), Partner Site Munich, Munich, Germany. Electronic address:

Purpose: Radioresistance in pancreatic cancer patients remains a critical obstacle to overcome. Understanding the molecular mechanisms underlying radioresistance may achieve better response to radiotherapy and thereby improving the poor treatment outcome. The aim of the present study was to elucidate the mechanisms leading to radioresistance by detailed characterization of isogenic radioresistant and radiosensitive cell lines.

Methods: The human pancreatic cancer cell lines, Panc-1 and MIA PaCa-2 were repeatedly exposed to radiation to generate radioresistant (RR) isogenic cell lines. The surviving cells were expanded, and their radiosensitivity was measured using colony formation assay. Tumor growth delay after irradiation was determined in a mouse pancreatic cancer xenograft model. Gene and protein expression were analyzed using RNA sequencing and Western blot, respectively. Cell cycle distribution and apoptosis (Caspase 3/7) were measured by FACS analysis. Reactive oxygen species generation and DNA damage were analyzed by detection of CM-HDCFDA and γH2AX staining, respectively. Transwell chamber assays were used to investigate cell migration and invasion.

Results: The acquired radioresistance of RR cell lines was demonstrated in vitro and validated in vivo. Ingenuity pathway analysis of RNA sequencing data predicted activation of cell viability in both RR cell lines. RR cancer cell lines demonstrated greater DNA repair efficiency and lower basal and radiation-induced reactive oxygen species levels. Migration and invasion were differentially affected in RR cell lines.

Conclusions: Our data indicate that repeated exposure to irradiation increases the expression of genes involved in cell viability and thereby leads to radioresistance. Mechanistically, increased DNA repair capacity and reduced oxidative stress might contribute to the radioresistant phenotype.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.radonc.2021.03.038DOI Listing
June 2021

Inter-Laboratory Comparison of Extracellular Vesicle Isolation Based on Ultracentrifugation.

Transfus Med Hemother 2021 Feb 8;48(1):48-59. Epub 2020 Jul 8.

Institute of Transfusion Medicine and Immunology, Medical Faculty Mannheim, Heidelberg University, German Red Cross Blood Donor Service Baden-Württemberg-Hessen, Mannheim, Germany.

Background/aims: Extracellular vesicles (EVs), including microvesicles and exosomes, deliver bioactive cargo mediating intercellular communication in physiological and pathological conditions. EVs are increasingly investigated as therapeutic agents and targets, but also as disease biomarkers. However, a definite consensus regarding EV isolation methods is lacking, which makes it intricate to standardize research practices and eventually reach a desirable level of data comparability. In our study, we performed an inter-laboratory comparison of EV isolation based on a differential ultracentrifugation protocol carried out in 4 laboratories in 2 independent rounds of isolation.

Methods: Conditioned medium of colorectal cancer cells was prepared and pooled by 1 person and distributed to each of the participating laboratories for isolation according to a pre-defined protocol. After EV isolation in each laboratory, quantification and characterization of isolated EVs was collectively done by 1 person having the highest expertise in the respective test method: Western blot, flow cytometry (fluorescence-activated cell sorting [FACS], nanoparticle tracking analysis (NTA), and transmission electron microscopy (TEM).

Results: EVs were visualized with TEM, presenting similar cup-shaped and spherical morphology and sizes ranging from 30 to 150 nm. NTA results showed similar size ranges of particles in both isolation rounds. EV preparations showed high purity by the expression of EV marker proteins CD9, CD63, CD81, Alix, and TSG101, and the lack of calnexin. FACS analysis of EVs revealed intense staining for CD63 and CD81 but lower levels for CD9 and TSG101. Preparations from 1 laboratory presented significantly lower particle numbers ( < 0.0001), most probably related to increased processing time. However, even when standardizing processing time, particle yields still differed significantly between groups, indicating inter-laboratory differences in the efficiency of EV isolation. Importantly, no relation was observed between centrifugation speed/k-factor and EV yield.

Conclusions: Our findings demonstrate that quantitative differences in EV yield might be due to equipment- and operator-dependent technical variability in ultracentrifugation-based EV isolation. Furthermore, our study emphasizes the need to standardize technical parameters such as the exact run speed and k-factor in order to transfer protocols between different laboratories. This hints at substantial inter-laboratory biases that should be assessed in multi-centric studies.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1159/000508712DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7923922PMC
February 2021

The Emerging Role of miRNAs for the Radiation Treatment of Pancreatic Cancer.

Cancers (Basel) 2020 Dec 9;12(12). Epub 2020 Dec 9.

Institute of Radiation Medicine (IRM), Department of Radiation Sciences (DRS), Helmholtz Zentrum München, 85764 Neuherberg, Germany.

Today, pancreatic cancer is the seventh leading cause of cancer-related deaths worldwide with a five-year overall survival rate of less than 7%. Only 15-20% of patients are eligible for curative intent surgery at the time of diagnosis. Therefore, neoadjuvant treatment regimens have been introduced in order to downsize the tumor by chemotherapy and radiotherapy. To further increase the efficacy of radiotherapy, novel molecular biomarkers are urgently needed to define the subgroup of pancreatic cancer patients who would benefit most from radiotherapy. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) could have the potential to serve as novel predictive and prognostic biomarkers in patients with pancreatic cancer. In the present article, the role of miRNAs as blood biomarkers, which are associated with either radioresistance or radiation-induced changes of miRNAs in pancreatic cancer, is discussed. Furthermore, the manuscript provides own data of miRNAs identified in a pancreatic cancer mouse model as well as radiation-induced miRNA changes in the plasma of tumor-bearing mice.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/cancers12123703DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7763922PMC
December 2020

Diagnostic potential of circulating cell-free microRNAs for community-acquired pneumonia and pneumonia-related sepsis.

J Cell Mol Med 2020 10 11;24(20):12054-12064. Epub 2020 Sep 11.

Division of Animal Physiology and Immunology, School of Life Sciences Weihenstephan, Technical University of Munich, Freising, Germany.

Cell-free microRNAs (miRNAs) are transferred in disease state including inflammatory lung diseases and are often packed into extracellular vesicles (EVs). To assess their suitability as biomarkers for community-acquired pneumonia (CAP) and severe secondary complications such as sepsis, we studied patients with CAP (n = 30), sepsis (n = 65) and healthy volunteers (n = 47) subdivided into a training (n = 67) and a validation (n = 75) cohort. After precipitating crude EVs from sera, associated small RNA was profiled by next-generation sequencing (NGS) and evaluated in multivariate analyses. A subset of the thereby identified biomarker candidates was validated both technically and additionally by reverse transcription quantitative real-time PCR (RT-qPCR). Differential gene expression (DGE) analysis revealed 29 differentially expressed miRNAs in CAP patients when compared to volunteers, and 25 miRNAs in patients with CAP, compared to those with sepsis. Sparse partial-least discriminant analysis separated groups based on 12 miRNAs. Three miRNAs proved as a significant biomarker signature. While expression levels of miR-1246 showed significant changes with an increase in overall disease severity from volunteers to CAP and to sepsis, miR-193a-5p and miR-542-3p differentiated patients with an infectious disease (CAP or sepsis) from volunteers. Cell-free miRNAs are potentially novel biomarkers for CAP and may help to identify patients at risk for progress to sepsis, facilitating early intervention and treatment.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/jcmm.15837DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7578906PMC
October 2020

Radiation Exposure of Peripheral Mononuclear Blood Cells Alters the Composition and Function of Secreted Extracellular Vesicles.

Int J Mol Sci 2020 Mar 27;21(7). Epub 2020 Mar 27.

Helmholtz Zentrum München, German Research Center for Environmental Health, Institute of Radiation Biology, 85764 Neuherberg, Germany.

Normal tissue toxicity is a dose-limiting factor in radiation therapy. Therefore, a detailed understanding of the normal tissue response to radiation is necessary to predict the risk of normal tissue toxicity and to development strategies for tissue protection. One component of normal tissue that is continuously exposed during therapeutic irradiation is the circulating population of peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC). PBMCs are highly sensitive to ionizing radiation (IR); however, little is known about how IR affects the PBMC response on a systemic level. It was the aim of this study to investigate whether IR was capable to induce changes in the composition and function of extracellular vesicles (EVs) secreted from PBMCs after radiation exposure to different doses. Therefore, whole blood samples from healthy donors were exposed to X-ray radiation in the clinically relevant doses of 0, 0.1, 2 or 6 Gy and PBMC-secreted EVs were isolated 72 h later. Proteome and miRNome analysis of EVs as well as functional studies were performed. Secreted EVs showed a dose-dependent increase in the number of significantly deregulated proteins and microRNAs. For both, proteome and microRNA data, principal component analysis showed a dose-dependent separation of control and exposed groups. Integrated pathway analysis of the radiation-regulated EV proteins and microRNAs consistently predicted an association of deregulated molecules with apoptosis, cell death and survival. Functional studies identified endothelial cells as an efficient EV recipient system, in which irradiation of recipient cells further increased the uptake. Furthermore an apoptosis suppressive effect of EVs from irradiated PBMCs in endothelial recipient cells was detected. In summary, this study demonstrates that IR modifies the communication between PBMCs and endothelial cells. EVs from irradiated PBMC donors were identified as transmitters of protective signals to irradiated endothelial cells. Thus, these data may lead to the discovery of biomarker candidates for radiation dosimetry and even more importantly, they suggest EVs as a novel systemic communication pathway between irradiated normal, non-cancer tissues.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijms21072336DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7178185PMC
March 2020

Postprandial transfer of colostral extracellular vesicles and their protein and miRNA cargo in neonatal calves.

PLoS One 2020 28;15(2):e0229606. Epub 2020 Feb 28.

Division of Animal Physiology and Immunology, TUM School of Life Sciences Weihenstephan, Technical University of Munich, Munich, Germany.

Extracellular vesicles (EVs) such as exosomes are key regulators of intercellular communication that can be found in almost all bio fluids. Although studies in the last decade have made great headway in discerning the role of EVs in many physiological and pathophysiological processes, the bioavailability and impact of dietary EVs and their cargo still remain to be elucidated. Due to its widespread consumption and high content of EV-associated microRNAs and proteins, a major focus in this field has been set on EVs in bovine milk and colostrum. Despite promising in vitro studies in recent years that show high resiliency of milk EVs to degradation and uptake of milk EV cargo in a variety of intestinal and blood cell types, in vivo experiments continue to be inconclusive and sometimes outright contradictive. To resolve this discrepancy, we assessed the potential postprandial transfer of colostral EVs to the circulation of newborn calves by analysing colostrum-specific protein and miRNAs, including specific isoforms (isomiRs) in cells, EV isolations and unfractionated samples from blood and colostrum. Our findings reveal distinct populations of EVs in colostrum and blood from cows that can be clearly separated by density, particle concentration and protein content (BTN1A1, MFGE8). Postprandial blood samples of calves show a time-dependent increase in EVs that share morphological and protein characteristics of colostral EVs. Analysis of miRNA expression profiles by Next-Generation Sequencing gave a different picture however. Although significant postprandial expression changes could only be detected for calf EV samples, expression profiles show very limited overlap with highly expressed miRNAs in colostral EVs or colostrum in general. Taken together our results indicate a selective uptake of membrane-associated protein cargo but not luminal miRNAs from colostral EVs into the circulation of neonatal calves.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0229606PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7048281PMC
May 2020

Transcriptomic profiling of cell-free and vesicular microRNAs from matched arterial and venous sera.

J Extracell Vesicles 2019 27;8(1):1670935. Epub 2019 Sep 27.

Division of Animal Physiology and Immunology, School of Life Sciences Weihenstephan, Technical University of Munich, Freising, Germany.

Extracellular vesicles (EVs) play central physiological and pathophysiological roles in intercellular communication. Biomarker studies addressing disorders such as cardiovascular diseases often focus on circulating microRNAs (miRNAs) and may, depending on the type of disease and clinic routine, utilise patient specimens sampled from arterial or venous blood vessels. Thus, it is essential to test whether circulating miRNA profiles depend on the respective sampling site. We assessed potential differences in arterial and venous cell-free miRNA profiles in a cohort of 20 patients scheduled for cardiac surgery. Prior to surgery, blood was simultaneously sampled from the radial artery and the internal jugular vein. After precipitating crude EVs, we performed small RNA Sequencing, which failed to detect significantly regulated miRNAs using stringent filtering criteria for differential expression analysis. Filtering with less strict criteria, we detected four miRNAs slightly upregulated in arterial samples, one of which could be validated by reverse transcription real-time PCR. The applicability of these findings to purified arterial and venous EVs was subsequently tested in a subset of the initial study population. While an additional clean-up step using size-exclusion chromatography seemed to reduce overall miRNA yield compared to crude EV samples, no miRNAs with differential arteriovenous expression were detected. Unsupervised clustering approaches were unable to correctly classify samples drawn from arteries or veins based on miRNAs in either crude or purified preparations. Particle characterisation of crude preparations as well as characterisation of EV markers in purified EVs resulted in highly similar characteristics for arterial and venous samples. With the exception of specific pathologies (e.g. severe pulmonary disorders), arterial versus venous blood sampling should therefore not represent a likely confounder when studying differentially expressed circulating miRNAs. The use of either arterial or venous serum EV samples should result in highly similar data on miRNA expression profiles for the majority of biomarker studies. ACE inhibitors: Angiotensin-converting-enzyme inhibitors; ApoA1: Apolipoprotein A1; CNX: Calnexin; Cv: Coefficient of variation; cDNA: Complementary DNA; CABG: Coronary artery bypass graft; DGE: Differential gene expression; DPBS: Dulbecco's Phosphate Buffered Saline; EVs: Extracellular vesicles; log2FC: Log2 fold change; baseMean: Mean miRNA expression; miRNA: MicroRNA; NTA: Nanoparticle Tracking Analysis; NGS: Next-Generation Sequencing; RT-qPCR: Reverse transcription quantitative real-time PCR; rRNA: Ribosomal RNA; RT: Room temperature; SEC: Size-exclusion chromatography; snoRNA: Small nucleolar RNA; snRNA: Small nuclear RNA; small RNA-Seq: Small RNA Sequencing; SD: Standard deviation; tRNA: Transfer RNA; TEM: Transmission electron microscopy; UA: Uranyl acetate.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/20013078.2019.1670935DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6781181PMC
September 2019

Propofol and Sevoflurane Differentially Impact MicroRNAs in Circulating Extracellular Vesicles during Colorectal Cancer Resection: A Pilot Study.

Anesthesiology 2020 01;132(1):107-120

From the Division of Animal Physiology and Immunology, Technical University of Munich, Germany (D.B., M.W.P.) the Departments of Anesthesiology (F.B., M.M., A.C., G.S.) Surgery (P.G.) the Institute of Human Genetics (A.L., M.R.), University Hospital, Ludwig-Maximilians-University, Munich, Germany.

Background: Extracellular vesicles and their microRNA cargo are crucial facilitators of malignant cell communication and could mediate effects of anesthetics on tumor biology during cancer resection. The authors performed a proof-of-concept study to demonstrate that propofol and sevoflurane have differential effects on vesicle-associated microRNAs that influence signaling pathways involved in tumor progression and metastasis.

Methods: Circulating vesicles were investigated in a prospective, matched-case pilot study in two cohorts of colorectal cancer patients receiving either propofol (n = 8) or sevoflurane (n = 9), matched for tumor stage and location. Serum was sampled before anesthesia and after tumor resection. Vesicular microRNA profiles were analyzed by next generation sequencing and confirmed by real-time polymerase chain reaction. Next, we assessed perioperative changes in microRNA expression induced by either anesthetic and compared their biologic effects on tumor-relevant pathways. Additionally, vesicles from pre- and postoperative sera were biologic characterized.

Results: Postoperative microRNA profiles were shifted in both groups with overlap in the perioperative response. A total of 64 (48 up, range of log2 fold change 1.07 to 3.76; 16 down, -1.00 to -1.55) and 33 (32 up, 1.02 to 2.98; 1 down, -1.36) microRNAs were significantly regulated (adjusted P value less than 0.05) by propofol and sevoflurane, respectively. Thirty-six (propofol) and five (sevoflurane) microRNAs were specifically responsive to either anesthetic agent. In silico target analyses of microRNA expression patterns indicated an inhibitory effect of propofol on crucial carcinoma-related pathways such as proliferation (z-score, -1.73) and migration (z-score, -1.97), as well as enhanced apoptosis (z-score, 1.19). While size distribution and protein markers of circulating vesicles were not affected by anesthesia, their concentration was reduced after surgery using both anesthetic procedures.

Conclusions: This proof-of-concept study provides preliminary evidence that anesthetic agents have specific effects on microRNA profiles in circulating vesicles. These findings could form the basis for larger and mechanistically oriented outcome studies in cancer patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/ALN.0000000000002986DOI Listing
January 2020

MIQE-Compliant Validation of MicroRNA Biomarker Signatures Established by Small RNA Sequencing.

Methods Mol Biol 2020 ;2065:23-38

Animal Physiology and Immunology, School of Life Sciences Weihenstephan, Technical University of Munich, Munich, Germany.

MicroRNAs (miRNAs), a class of small non-coding RNAs that modulate gene expression at the post-transcriptional level, are attractive targets in many academic and diagnostic applications. Among them, assessing miRNA biomarkers in minimally invasive liquid biopsies was shown to be a promising tool for managing diseases, particularly cancer. The initial screening of disease-relevant transcripts is often performed by high-throughput next-generation sequencing (NGS), in here RNA sequencing (RNA-Seq). After complex processing of small RNA-Seq data, differential gene expression analysis is performed to evaluate miRNA biomarker signatures. To ensure experimental validity, biomarker candidates are commonly validated by an orthogonal technology such as reverse transcription quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR). This chapter outlines in detail the material and methods one can apply to reproducibly identify miRNA biomarker signatures from blood total RNA. After screening miRNA profiles by small RNA-Seq, resulting data is validated in compliance with the "Minimum Information for Publication of Quantitative Real-Time PCR Experiments" (MIQE) guidelines.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4939-9833-3_3DOI Listing
December 2020

TGFBR2‑dependent alterations of microRNA profiles in extracellular vesicles and parental colorectal cancer cells.

Int J Oncol 2019 Oct 19;55(4):925-937. Epub 2019 Aug 19.

Department of Applied Tumor Biology, Institute of Pathology, Heidelberg University Hospital, D‑69120 Heidelberg, Germany.

In colorectal cancer (CRC) with microsatellite instability (MSI), >90% of cases are affected by inactivating frameshift mutations of transforming growth factor β receptor type 2 (TGFBR2). TGFBR2 deficiency is considered to drive MSI tumor progression by abrogating downstream TGF‑β signaling. This pathway can alter the expression of coding and non‑coding RNAs, including microRNAs (miRNAs), which are also present in extracellular vesicles (EVs) as post‑transcriptional modulators of gene expression. In our previous study, it was shown that TGFBR2 deficiency alters the protein composition and function of EVs in MSI tumors. To investigate whether mutant TGFBR2 may also affect the miRNA cargo of EVs, the present study characterized miRNAs in EVs and their parental MSI tumor cells that differed only in TGFBR2 expression status. The HCT116‑TGFBR2 MSI cell line model enables the doxycycline (dox)‑inducible reconstituted expression of TGFBR2 in an isogenic background (‑dox, TGFBR2 deficient; +dox, TGFBR2 proficient). Small RNA sequencing of cellular and EV miRNAs showed that the majority of the miRNAs (263/471; 56%) were shared between MSI tumor cells and their EVs. Exploratory data analysis revealed the TGBFR2‑dependent cluster separation of miRNA profiles in EVs and MSI tumor cells. This segregation appeared to result from two subsets of miRNAs, the expression of which were regulated in a TGFBR2‑dependent manner (EVs: n=10; MSI cells: n=15). In the EV subset, 7/10 miRNAs were downregulated and 3/10 were upregulated by TGFBR2 deficiency. In the cellular subset, 13/15 miRNAs were downregulated and 2/15 miRNAs were upregulated in the TGFBR2‑deficient cells. The present study emphasizes the general overlap of miRNA profiles in MSI tumor cells and their EVs, but also highlights the impact of a single tumor driver mutation on the expression of individual miRNAs, as exemplified by the downregulation of miR‑381‑3p in TGFBR2‑deficient MSI tumor cells and their secreted EVs.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3892/ijo.2019.4859DOI Listing
October 2019

Summary of the ISEV workshop on extracellular vesicles as disease biomarkers, held in Birmingham, UK, during December 2017.

J Extracell Vesicles 2018 17;7(1):1473707. Epub 2018 May 17.

Department of Biological and Medical Sciences, Oxford Brookes University, Oxford, UK.

This report summarises the presentations and activities of the ISEV Workshop on extracellular vesicle biomarkers held in Birmingham, UK during December 2017. Among the key messages was broad agreement about the importance of biospecimen science. Much greater attention needs to be paid towards the provenance of collected samples. The workshop also highlighted clear gaps in our knowledge about pre-analytical factors that alter extracellular vesicles (EVs). The future utility of certified standards for credentialing of instruments and software, to analyse EV and for tracking the influence of isolation steps on the structure and content of EVs were also discussed. Several example studies were presented, demonstrating the potential utility for EVs in disease diagnosis, prognosis, longitudinal serial testing and stratification of patients. The conclusion of the workshop was that more effort focused on pre-analytical issues and benchmarking of isolation methods is needed to strengthen collaborations and advance more effective biomarkers.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/20013078.2018.1473707DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5965025PMC
May 2018

Minimal information for studies of extracellular vesicles 2018 (MISEV2018): a position statement of the International Society for Extracellular Vesicles and update of the MISEV2014 guidelines.

J Extracell Vesicles 2018 23;7(1):1535750. Epub 2018 Nov 23.

Institute of Biomedicine and Molecular Immunology (IBIM), National Research Council (CNR) of Italy, Palermo, Italy.

The last decade has seen a sharp increase in the number of scientific publications describing physiological and pathological functions of extracellular vesicles (EVs), a collective term covering various subtypes of cell-released, membranous structures, called exosomes, microvesicles, microparticles, ectosomes, oncosomes, apoptotic bodies, and many other names. However, specific issues arise when working with these entities, whose size and amount often make them difficult to obtain as relatively pure preparations, and to characterize properly. The International Society for Extracellular Vesicles (ISEV) proposed Minimal Information for Studies of Extracellular Vesicles ("MISEV") guidelines for the field in 2014. We now update these "MISEV2014" guidelines based on evolution of the collective knowledge in the last four years. An important point to consider is that ascribing a specific function to EVs in general, or to subtypes of EVs, requires reporting of specific information beyond mere description of function in a crude, potentially contaminated, and heterogeneous preparation. For example, claims that exosomes are endowed with exquisite and specific activities remain difficult to support experimentally, given our still limited knowledge of their specific molecular machineries of biogenesis and release, as compared with other biophysically similar EVs. The MISEV2018 guidelines include tables and outlines of suggested protocols and steps to follow to document specific EV-associated functional activities. Finally, a checklist is provided with summaries of key points.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/20013078.2018.1535750DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6322352PMC
November 2018

Evaluation of serum extracellular vesicle isolation methods for profiling miRNAs by next-generation sequencing.

J Extracell Vesicles 2018 4;7(1):1481321. Epub 2018 Jun 4.

Institute of Human Genetics, University Hospital, LMU Munich, Munich, Germany.

Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are intercellular communicators with key functions in physiological and pathological processes and have recently garnered interest because of their diagnostic and therapeutic potential. The past decade has brought about the development and commercialization of a wide array of methods to isolate EVs from serum. Which subpopulations of EVs are captured strongly depends on the isolation method, which in turn determines how suitable resulting samples are for various downstream applications. To help clinicians and scientists choose the most appropriate approach for their experiments, isolation methods need to be comparatively characterized. Few attempts have been made to comprehensively analyse vesicular microRNAs (miRNAs) in patient biofluids for biomarker studies. To address this discrepancy, we set out to benchmark the performance of several isolation principles for serum EVs in healthy individuals and critically ill patients. Here, we compared five different methods of EV isolation in combination with two RNA extraction methods regarding their suitability for biomarker discovery-focused miRNA sequencing as well as biological characteristics of captured vesicles. Our findings reveal striking method-specific differences in both the properties of isolated vesicles and the ability of associated miRNAs to serve in biomarker research. While isolation by precipitation and membrane affinity was highly suitable for miRNA-based biomarker discovery, methods based on size-exclusion chromatography failed to separate patients from healthy volunteers. Isolated vesicles differed in size, quantity, purity and composition, indicating that each method captured distinctive populations of EVs as well as additional contaminants. Even though the focus of this work was on transcriptomic profiling of EV-miRNAs, our insights also apply to additional areas of research. We provide guidance for navigating the multitude of EV isolation methods available today and help researchers and clinicians make an informed choice about which strategy to use for experiments involving critically ill patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/20013078.2018.1481321DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5990937PMC
June 2018

Glucocorticoid receptor overexpression slightly shifts microRNA expression patterns in triple-negative breast cancer.

Int J Oncol 2018 Jun 27;52(6):1765-1776. Epub 2018 Mar 27.

Institute of Human Genetics, University Hospital, LMU Munich, 80336 Munich, Germany.

Triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) is a particularly aggressive subtype of breast cancer with limited options for clinical intervention. As with many solid tumors, TNBC is known to promote invasiveness and metastasis by secreting extracellular vesicles (EVs) capable of modulating the behaviour of recipient cells. Recent investigations have demonstrated that high expression levels of glucocorticoid receptor (GR) in TNBC are linked to therapy resistance, higher recurrence rates and increased mortality. In addition to activating protein-coding genes, GR is also involved in the expression of short non-coding RNAs including microRNAs (miRNAs or miRs). The molecular mechanisms responsible for the oncogenic effects of GR on TNBC have yet to be fully elucidated; however, emerging evidence suggests that miRNAs may play a pivotal role in tumorigenesis and metastasis. Thus, the aim of this study was to identify GR-regulated cellular and vesicular miRNAs that might contribute to the particularly oncogenic phenotype of TNBC with a high GR expression. We analyzed miRNA profiles of three TNBC cell lines using an in vitro model of GR overexpression. Next-generation sequencing revealed minor, cell line-specific changes in cellular miRNA expression, whereas vesicular miRNAs were not significantly regulated by GR. Additionally, the analysis of predicted miRNA targets failed to establish a causal link between GR-induced miRNA expression and oncogenic signaling. On the whole, given that GR influences miRNA profiles to only a small degree, other mechanisms are more likely to be responsible for the increased mortality of patients with TNBC with a high GR expression.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3892/ijo.2018.4336DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5919721PMC
June 2018

Cellular and extracellular miRNAs are blood-compartment-specific diagnostic targets in sepsis.

J Cell Mol Med 2017 10 6;21(10):2403-2411. Epub 2017 Apr 6.

Department of Anesthesiology, University Hospital, Ludwig-Maximilians-University, Munich, Germany.

Septic shock is a common medical condition with a mortality approaching 50% where early diagnosis and treatment are of particular importance for patient survival. Novel biomarkers that serve as prompt indicators of sepsis are urgently needed. High-throughput technologies assessing circulating microRNAs represent an important tool for biomarker identification, but the blood-compartment specificity of these miRNAs has not yet been investigated. We characterized miRNA profiles from serum exosomes, total serum and blood cells (leukocytes, erythrocytes, platelets) of sepsis patients by next-generation sequencing and RT-qPCR (n = 3 × 22) and established differences in miRNA expression between blood compartments. In silico analysis was used to identify compartment-specific signalling functions of differentially regulated miRNAs in sepsis-relevant pathways. In septic shock, a total of 77 and 103 miRNAs were down- and up-regulated, respectively. A majority of these regulated miRNAs (14 in serum, 32 in exosomes and 73 in blood cells) had not been previously associated with sepsis. We found a distinctly compartment-specific regulation of miRNAs between sepsis patients and healthy volunteers. Blood cellular miR-199b-5p was identified as a potential early indicator for sepsis and septic shock. miR-125b-5p and miR-26b-5p were uniquely regulated in exosomes and serum, respectively, while one miRNA (miR-27b-3p) was present in all three compartments. The expression of sepsis-associated miRNAs is compartment-specific. Exosome-derived miRNAs contribute significant information regarding sepsis diagnosis and survival prediction and could serve as newly identified targets for the development of novel sepsis biomarkers.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/jcmm.13162DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5618677PMC
October 2017

EV-TRACK: transparent reporting and centralizing knowledge in extracellular vesicle research.

Nat Methods 2017 02;14(3):228-232

Inflammation Division, Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research, Parkville, Victoria, Australia.

We argue that the field of extracellular vesicle (EV) biology needs more transparent reporting to facilitate interpretation and replication of experiments. To achieve this, we describe EV-TRACK, a crowdsourcing knowledgebase (http://evtrack.org) that centralizes EV biology and methodology with the goal of stimulating authors, reviewers, editors and funders to put experimental guidelines into practice.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/nmeth.4185DOI Listing
February 2017

Toward reliable biomarker signatures in the age of liquid biopsies - how to standardize the small RNA-Seq workflow.

Nucleic Acids Res 2016 07 17;44(13):5995-6018. Epub 2016 Jun 17.

Department of Animal Physiology and Immunology, TUM School of Life Sciences Weihenstephan, Technical University of Munich, Weihenstephaner Berg 3, 85354 Freising, Germany

Small RNA-Seq has emerged as a powerful tool in transcriptomics, gene expression profiling and biomarker discovery. Sequencing cell-free nucleic acids, particularly microRNA (miRNA), from liquid biopsies additionally provides exciting possibilities for molecular diagnostics, and might help establish disease-specific biomarker signatures. The complexity of the small RNA-Seq workflow, however, bears challenges and biases that researchers need to be aware of in order to generate high-quality data. Rigorous standardization and extensive validation are required to guarantee reliability, reproducibility and comparability of research findings. Hypotheses based on flawed experimental conditions can be inconsistent and even misleading. Comparable to the well-established MIQE guidelines for qPCR experiments, this work aims at establishing guidelines for experimental design and pre-analytical sample processing, standardization of library preparation and sequencing reactions, as well as facilitating data analysis. We highlight bottlenecks in small RNA-Seq experiments, point out the importance of stringent quality control and validation, and provide a primer for differential expression analysis and biomarker discovery. Following our recommendations will encourage better sequencing practice, increase experimental transparency and lead to more reproducible small RNA-Seq results. This will ultimately enhance the validity of biomarker signatures, and allow reliable and robust clinical predictions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/nar/gkw545DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5291277PMC
July 2016