Current Study: Neural stem cell exosomes for human aging-associated neuroinflammation and cognitive decline

Exosome-based Therapy for  Hypothalamic Inflammation (HI) and Other Brain Pathologies

  1. Hypothalamic inflammation (HI) is associated with aging, metabolic disease and obesity through a variety of neuroendocrine pathways

  2. Neural stem cells (NSCs) exert a protective and inflammation-suppressant role on the brain in aged mice
          a. Found to be mediated by stem cell-derived exosomes and their therapeutic contents
          b. Protective effect of NSCs has been restored experimentally through exogenous exosome application

  3. There is evidence that NSCs and their exosomes can also promote healing of damaged neurovascular tissue in traumatic brain injury and stroke
         a. NSC exosomes contain a number of factors that promote growth and tissue-healing

  4. NSC-derived exosomes are being tested for patient applications to ameliorate aging-associated cognitive decline and dementia, as well as a variety of metabolic and neurodegenerative diseases in the brain
Source: Kim K, Choe HK. Role of hypothalamus in aging and its underlying cellular mechanisms. Mechanisms of ageing and development. 2019 Jan 1;177:74-9.

Experimental Design

Summary Hypothesis of Effects

Current Study: Exosomal delivery of antiviral and cute respiratory distress therapies for COVID-19

Exosome-based Therapy for  COVID-19

  1. COVID-19 progression is associated with a ‘cytokine storm,’ a significant elevation in inflammatory cytokines that are involved in acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS), as well as causing in some cases long-term damage to multiple organ systems.

  2. Exosomes can be used to deliver contents that suppress the cytokine storm, thereby reducing respiratory distress and organ damage.

  3. We are also engineering specific viral-targeted constructs that can be delivered by exosomes to cells in order to ‘deactivate’ the SARS-Cov-2 virus that causes COVID-19.
Source: Schett, G., Sticherling, M. & Neurath, M.F. COVID-19: risk for cytokine targeting in chronic inflammatory diseases?. Nat Rev Immunol 20, 271–272 (2020).

Experimental Design

Summary Hypothesis of Effects