Glia-derived exosomes: Promising therapeutic targets

He Li, Yin Luo, Luojiang Zhu, Weilong Hua, Yongxin Zhang, Hongjian Zhang, Lei Zhang, Zifu Li, Pengfei Xing, Yongwei Zhang, Bo Hong, Pengfei Yang, Jianmin Liu

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Glia is an important component of the nervous system that is involved in neurotransmitter uptake, signal transduction, myelin synthesis, neurodevelopment, and immune response. Exosomes are extracellular vesicles that are secreted from certain types of cells, and are known to mediate glia function. Glia-derived exosomes (GDEs) can transport proteins, nucleotides and cellular waste, and exert both protective and toxic effects on the nervous system. GDEs promote glia-neuron communication, anti-stress responses, anti-inflammation and neurite outgrowth, and may also be involved in neurological disease such as glioma, glioblastoma, Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson disease and neuronal HIV infections. This review summarizes the current research on GDEs and their functions, with emphasis on their therapeutic potential.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)116951
JournalLife Sciences
Publication statusPublished - Dec 15 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • Animals
  • Cell Communication/physiology
  • Central Nervous System/metabolism
  • Exosomes/metabolism
  • Humans
  • Neuroglia/metabolism
  • Neurons
  • Neurotransmitter Agents
  • Signal Transduction


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