Extracellular vesicles (EVs) play a role in the pathophysiological processes and in different diseases, including cardiovascular disease. Out of several categories of EVs, exosomes (smallest - 30 to 150 nm) are gaining most of the focus as the next generation of biomarkers and in therapeutic strategies. This is because exosomes can be differentiated from other types of EVs based on the expression of tetraspanin molecules on the surface. More importantly, exosomes can be traced back to the cell of origin by identifying the unique cellular marker(s) on the exosomal surface. Recently, several researchs have demonstrated an important and underappreciated mechanism of paracrine cell-cell communication involving exosomal transfer, and its subsequent functional impact on recipient cells. Exosomes are enriched in proteins, mRNAs, miRNAs, and other non-coding RNAs, which can potentially alter myocardial function. Additionally, different stages of tissue damage can also be identified by measuring these bioactive molecules in the circulation. There are several aspects of this new concept still unknown. Therefore, in this review, we have summarized the knowledge we have so far and highlighted the potential of this novel concept of next generation biomarkers and therapeutic intervention.
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