Dopamine-loaded blood exosomes targeted to brain for better treatment of Parkinson’s disease

Qu, Mengke, Qing Lin, Luyi Huang, Yao Fu, Luyao Wang, Shanshan He, Yu Fu et al. "Dopamine-loaded blood exosomes targeted to brain for better treatment of Parkinson's disease." Journal of Controlled Release 287 (2018): 156-166.

Parkinson’s disease (PD), one of the most common movement and neurodegenerative disorders, is challenging to treat, largely because the blood-brain barrier blocks passage of most drugs. Here we find exosomes from blood showing natural brain targeting ability which involved the transferrin-transferrin receptor interaction. Thus, we develop a biocompatible platform based on blood exosomes for delivering drugs across the blood-brain barrier. Blood exosomes show sizes between 40 and 200 nm and spherical morphology, and dopamine can be efficiently loaded into blood exosomes by a saturated solution incubation method. Further in vitro and in vivo studies demonstrates these exosomes successfully delivered dopamine to brain, including the striatum and substantia nigra. Brain distribution of dopamine increased >15-fold by using the blood exosomes as delivery system. Dopamine-loaded exosomes show much better therapeutic efficacy in a PD mouse model and lower systemic toxicity than free dopamine after intravenous administration. These results suggest that blood exosomes can be used as a promising drug delivery platform for targeted therapy against PD and other diseases of the central nervous system.

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