Engineered Extracellular Vesicles: Tailored-Made Nanomaterials for Medical Applications

Kenny Man, Mathieu Y Brunet, Marie-Christine Jones, Sophie C Cox

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)
217 Downloads (Pure)


Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are emerging as promising nanoscale therapeutics due to their intrinsic role as mediators of intercellular communication, regulating tissue development and homeostasis. The low immunogenicity and natural cell-targeting capabilities of EVs has led to extensive research investigating their potential as novel acellular tools for tissue regeneration or for the diagnosis of pathological conditions. However, the clinical use of EVs has been hindered by issues with yield and heterogeneity. From the modification of parental cells and naturally-derived vesicles to the development of artificial biomimetic nanoparticles or the functionalisation of biomaterials, a multitude of techniques have been employed to augment EVs therapeutic efficacy. This review will explore various engineering strategies that could promote EVs scalability and therapeutic effectiveness beyond their native utility. Herein, we highlight the current state-of-the-art EV-engineering techniques with discussion of opportunities and obstacles for each. This is synthesised into a guide for selecting a suitable strategy to maximise the potential efficacy of EVs as nanoscale therapeutics.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1838
Pages (from-to)1-30
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 15 Sept 2020


  • EV engineering
  • EV-functionalised biomaterials
  • artificial EVs
  • exosomes
  • extracellular vesicles
  • microvesicles
  • nanomedicine
  • regenerative medicine


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