Extracellular vesicles in low volume uterine lavage and serum: novel and promising biomarker for endometritis in Arabian mares

BMC Vet Res. 2022 Jan 18;18(1):42. doi: 10.1186/s12917-022-03137-3.


Background: Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are a promising biomarker and play a vital role in cell-cell communication. This study aimed (I) to identify and characterize EVs from low volume uterine lavage (LVL) and serum in mares with endometritis, compared to healthy controls and (II) to measure serum levels of interleukin 6 (IL-6), and prostaglandins (PGF and PGE2). Mares were divided into 30 sub-fertile (endometritis) and 20 fertile (controls). Serum and LVL was collected for EV isolation, and determination of serum levels of inflammatory mediators. Characterization and visualization of EVs were done by electron microscopy, dynamic light scattering and flow cytometry.

Results: Serial ultracentrifugation of LVL and use of a commercial kit for serum were strategies for EVs isolation. Mares with endometritis released higher amounts of larger size EVs. The EVs from mares with endometritis differentially expressed CD9 and CD63, compared to controls. Mares suffering from endometritis evoked higher levels of inflammatory mediators.

Conclusions: Thus, EVs could be used for a better understanding the regulatory mechanisms associated with developing endometritis in mares.

Keywords: Endometritis; Extracellular vesicles; Interleukin 6; Mares; Prostaglandins; Serum; Uterine lavage.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biomarkers
  • Dinoprostone
  • Endometritis* / diagnosis
  • Endometritis* / veterinary
  • Extracellular Vesicles*
  • Female
  • Horse Diseases* / diagnosis
  • Horses
  • Therapeutic Irrigation / veterinary


  • Biomarkers
  • Dinoprostone