Mesenchymal Stem Cell-Derived Extracellular Vesicles as Proposed Therapy in a Rat Model of Cerebral Small Vessel Disease

Reut Guy, Shay Herman, Hadar Benyamini, Tali Ben-Zur, Hila Kobo, Metsada Pasmanik-Chor, Dafna Yaacobi, Eric Barel, Chana Yagil, Yoram Yagil, Daniel Offen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Mesenchymal stem cell-derived extracellular vesicles (MSC-EVs) have been employed in the past decade as therapeutic agents in various diseases, including central nervous system (CNS) disorders. We currently aimed to use MSC-EVs as potential treatment for cerebral small vessel disease (CSVD), a complex disorder with a variety of manifestations. MSC-EVs were intranasally administrated to salt-sensitive hypertension prone SBH/y rats that were DOCA-salt loaded (SBH/y-DS), which we have previously shown is a model of CSVD. MSC-EVs accumulated within brain lesion sites of SBH/y-DS. An in vitro model of an inflammatory environment in the brain demonstrated anti-inflammatory properties of MSC-EVs. Following in vivo MSC-EV treatment, gene set enrichment analysis (GSEA) of SBH/y-DS cortices revealed downregulation of immune system response-related gene sets. In addition, MSC-EVs downregulated gene sets related to apoptosis, wound healing and coagulation, and upregulated gene sets associated with synaptic signaling and cognition. While no specific gene was markedly altered upon treatment, the synergistic effect of all gene alternations was sufficient to increase animal survival and improve the neurological state of affected SBH/y-DS rats. Our data suggest MSC-EVs act as microenvironment modulators, through various molecular pathways. We conclude that MSC-EVs may serve as beneficial therapeutic measure for multifactorial disorders, such as CSVD.

Original languageEnglish
Article number11211
JournalInternational Journal of Molecular Sciences
Issue number19
StatePublished - 1 Oct 2022


  • cerebral small vessel disease
  • extracellular vesicles
  • mesenchymal stem cells

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Spectroscopy
  • Catalysis
  • Inorganic Chemistry
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Organic Chemistry


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