Malignant mesothelioma (MM) is a devastating cancer of mesothelial cells, caused by asbestos exposure. Limited knowledge regarding the detection of asbestos exposure and the early diagnosis of MM, as well as a lack of successful treatment options for this deadly cancer, project an immediate need to understand the mechanism(s) of MM development. With the recent discovery of nano-vesicles, namely exosomes, and their enormous potential to contain signature molecules representative of different diseases, as well as to communicate with distant targets, we were encouraged to explore their role(s) in MM biology. In this review, we summarize what we know so far about exosomes and MM based on our own studies and on published literature from other groups in the field. We expect that the information contained in this review will help advance the field of MM forward by revealing the mechanisms of MM development and survival. Based on this knowledge, future therapeutic strategies for MM can potentially be developed. We also hope that the outcome of our studies presented here may help in the detection of MM.
Keywords: asbestos; exosomes; malignant mesothelioma.