Review Article

Extracellular vesicles in vascular remodeling

Chao Ye1, Fen Zheng1, Nan Wu1, Guo-qing Zhu1, Xiu-zhen Li2
1 Key Laboratory of Targeted Intervention of Cardiovascular Disease, Collaborative Innovation Center for Cardiovascular Disease Translational Medicine, Department of Physiology, Nanjing Medical University, Nanjing 210029, China
2 Department of Cardiology, The Second Affiliated Hospital of Nanjing Medical University, Nanjing 210029, China
Correspondence to: Guo-qing Zhu:, Xiu-zhen Li:,
DOI: 10.1038/s41401-021-00846-7
Received: 25 September 2021
Accepted: 16 December 2021
Advance online: 12 January 2022


Vascular remodeling contributes to the development of a variety of vascular diseases including hypertension and atherosclerosis. Phenotypic transformation of vascular cells, oxidative stress, inflammation and vascular calcification are closely associated with vascular remodeling. Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are naturally released from almost all types of cells and can be detected in nearly all body fluids including blood and urine. EVs affect vascular oxidative stress, inflammation, calcification, and lipid plaque formation; and thereby impact vascular remodeling in a variety of cardiovascular diseases. EVs may be used as biomarkers for diagnosis and prognosis, and therapeutic strategies for vascular remodeling and cardiovascular diseases. This review includes a comprehensive analysis of the roles of EVs in the vascular remodeling in vascular diseases, and the prospects of EVs in the diagnosis and treatment of vascular diseases.
Keywords: extracellular vesicles; vascular remodeling; hypertension; atherosclerosis; oxidative stress; inflammation

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