Extracellular Vesicles: An Emerging Nanoplatform for Cancer Therapy

Yifan Ma, Shiyan Dong, Xuefeng Li, Betty Y.S. Kim, Zhaogang Yang, Wen Jiang

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are cell-derived membrane particles that represent an endogenous mechanism for cell-to-cell communication. Since discovering that EVs have multiple advantages over currently available delivery platforms, such as their ability to overcome natural barriers, intrinsic cell targeting properties, and circulation stability, the potential use of EVs as therapeutic nanoplatforms for cancer studies has attracted considerable interest. To fully elucidate EVs’ therapeutic function for treating cancer, all current knowledge about cellular uptake and trafficking of EVs will be initially reviewed. In order to further improve EVs as anticancer therapeutics, engineering strategies for cancer therapy have been widely explored in the last decade, along with other cancer therapies. However, therapeutic applications of EVs as drug delivery systems have been limited because of immunological concerns, lack of methods to scale EV production, and efficient drug loading. We will review and discuss recent progress and remaining challenges in developing EVs as a delivery nanoplatform for cancer therapy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number606906
JournalFrontiers in Oncology
StatePublished - Feb 8 2021


  • cancer therapy
  • drug delivery
  • exosome
  • extracellular vesicle
  • therapeutic nanoplatform

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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