Choroid plexus-derived extracellular vesicles exhibit brain targeting characteristics

Biomaterials. 2022 Nov:290:121830. doi: 10.1016/j.biomaterials.2022.121830. Epub 2022 Oct 6.


The brain is protected against invading organisms and other unwanted substances by tightly regulated barriers. However, these central nervous system (CNS) barriers impede the delivery of drugs into the brain via the blood circulation and are therefore considered major hurdles in the treatment of neurological disorders. Consequently, there is a high need for efficient delivery systems that are able to cross these strict barriers. While most research focuses on the blood-brain barrier (BBB), the design of drug delivery platforms that are able to cross the blood-cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) barrier, formed by a single layer of choroid plexus epithelial cells, remains a largely unexplored domain. The discovery that extracellular vesicles (EVs) make up a natural mechanism for information transfer between cells and across cell layers, has stimulated interest in their potential use as drug delivery platform. Here, we report that choroid plexus epithelial cell-derived EVs exhibit the capacity to home to the brain after peripheral administration. Moreover, these vesicles are able to functionally deliver cargo into the brain. Our findings underline the therapeutic potential of choroid plexus-derived EVs as a brain drug delivery vehicle via targeting of the blood-CSF interface.

Keywords: Blood-cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) barrier; Brain barriers; Brain delivery; Extracellular vesicles (EVs).

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Blood-Brain Barrier / physiology
  • Brain
  • Central Nervous System
  • Choroid Plexus*
  • Extracellular Vesicles*