BackgroundOur hypothesis is that the immunomodulatory capacities of mesenchymal stem cell‒derived extracellular vesicles (EVs) can be enhanced by specific microRNAs (miRNAs) to effectively attenuate post-transplant lung ischemia‒reperfusion (IR) injury.
MethodsThe expression of miR-206 was analyzed in bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) fluid of patients on Days 0 and 1 after lung transplantation. Lung IR injury was evaluated in C57BL/6 mice using a left lung hilar-ligation model with or without treatment with EVs or antagomiR-206‒enriched EVs. Murine lung tissue was used for miRNA microarray hybridization analysis, and cytokine expression, lung injury, and edema were evaluated. A donation after circulatory death and murine orthotopic lung transplantation model was used to evaluate the protection by enriched EVs against lung IR injury. In vitro studies analyzed type II epithelial cell activation after coculturing with EVs.
ResultsA significant upregulation of miR-206 was observed in the BAL fluid of patients on Day 1 after lung transplantation compared with Day 0 and in murine lungs after IR injury compared with sham. Treatment with antagomiR-206‒enriched EVs attenuated lung dysfunction, injury, and edema compared with treatment with EVs alone after murine lung IR injury. Enriched EVs reduced lung injury and neutrophil infiltration as well as improved allograft oxygenation after murine orthotopic lung transplantation. Enriched EVs significantly decreased proinflammatory cytokines, especially epithelial cell‒dependent CXCL1 expression, in the in vivo and in vitro IR injury models.
ConclusionsEVs can be used as biomimetic nanovehicles for protective immunomodulation by enriching them with antagomiR-206 to mitigate epithelial cell activation and neutrophil infiltration in the lungs after IR injury.