Candidate biomarkers in exosome-like vesicles purified from rat and mouse urine samples

Proteomics Clin Appl. 2010 Apr;4(4):416-25. doi: 10.1002/prca.200900103.


Purpose: There is a compelling clinical imperative to identify discerning molecular biomarkers of hepatic disease in order to inform the diagnosis, prognosis and treatment.

Experimental design: We have investigated the proteome of urinary vesicles present in urine samples obtained from experimental models for the study of liver injury, as an approach for identifying potential biomarkers for hepatic disease.

Results: The biochemical and proteomic characterization of highly purified exosome-like urinary vesicles has identified 28 proteins previously unreported in these vesicles, and many that have been previously associated with diseases, such as the prion-related protein. Furthermore, in urine samples from D-galactosamine-treated rats, a well-characterized experimental model for acute liver injury, we have detected a severe reduction in some proteins that normally are clearly detected in urinary vesicles. Finally, differential protein content on urinary vesicles from a mouse model for chronic liver injury has been also identified.

Conclusions and clinical relevance: Our results argue positively that urinary vesicles could be a source for identifying non-invasive biomarkers of liver injury. We proposed some proteins such as Cd26, Cd81, Slc3A1 and Cd10 that have been found to be differentially expressed in urinary vesicles from some of the analyzed models as potential biomarkers for liver injury.

Keywords: Biomarker; Exosomes; Subproteome; Urine; Vesicles.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biomarkers / urine*
  • Blotting, Western
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Exosomes / metabolism*
  • Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry
  • Liver / injuries
  • Liver / pathology
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar


  • Biomarkers