Hematopoietic stem cells, regulated by their microenvironment (or “niche”), sustain the production of mature blood and immune cells. Leukemia cells remodel the microenvironment to enhance their survival, which is accompanied by the loss of support for normal hematopoiesis in hematologic malignancies. Extracellular vesicles (EVs) mediate intercellular communication in physiological and pathological conditions, and deciphering their functions in cell-cell interactions in the ecosystem can highlight potential therapeutic targets. In this Review, we illustrate the utility of EVs derived from various cell types, focusing on the biological molecules they contain and the behavioral alterations they can induce in recipient cells. We also discuss the potential for clinical application in hematologic malignancies, including EV-based therapeutic regimens, drug delivery via EVs, and the use of EVs (or their cargoes) as biomarkers.
Guohuan Sun, Quan Gu, Junke Zheng, Hui Cheng, Tao Cheng