Exosomes and microvesicles in normal physiology, pathophysiology, and renal diseases

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Extracellular vesicles are cell-derived membrane particles ranging from 30 to 5,000 nm in size, including exosomes, microvesicles, and apoptotic bodies. They are released under physiological conditions, but also upon cellular activation, senescence, and apoptosis. They play an important role in intercellular communication. Their release may also maintain cellular integrity by ridding the cell of damaging substances. This review describes the biogenesis, uptake, and detection of extracellular vesicles in addition to the impact that they have on recipient cells, focusing on mechanisms important in the pathophysiology of kidney diseases, such as thrombosis, angiogenesis, tissue regeneration, immune modulation, and inflammation. In kidney diseases, extracellular vesicles may be utilized as biomarkers, as they are detected in both blood and urine. Furthermore, they may contribute to the pathophysiology of renal disease while also having beneficial effects associated with tissue repair. Because of their role in the promotion of thrombosis, inflammation, and immune-mediated disease, they could be the target of drug therapy, whereas their favorable effects could be utilized therapeutically in acute and chronic kidney injury.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)11-30
JournalPediatric Nephrology
Issue number1
Early online date2017 Nov 27
Publication statusPublished - 2019 Jan

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Urology and Nephrology
  • Pediatrics

Free keywords

  • Exosomes
  • Extracellular vesicles
  • Inflammation
  • Kidney
  • Microvesicles
  • Thrombosis


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