National Research Council of Italy

Institute of Biosciences and BioResources

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Bioactivity and biodistribution of microalgae-derived extracellular vesicles in C. elegans

Pamela Santonicola 
IBBR - UOS Napoli - Italy

October 20, 2021 (11:30-12:30)
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Abstract: Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are lipid membrane nanoparticles secreted by various cell types for intercellular communication. Caenorhabditis elegans is a unique model to study EVs bioactivity and biodistribution in vivo, thanks to its small size, powerful genetics, short life, body transparency, low costs and reduced ethical concerns. We used C. elegans to test in vivo the bioactivity and biodistribution of nanoalgosomes, a new subtype of small extracellular vesicles derived from the microalga Tetraselmis chuii [1, 2]. We demonstrated that nanoalgosomes did not cause any effect on C. elegans survival, development and fertility at different concentrations and time of exposure. Interestingly, nanoalgosomes improve C. elegans motility in a dose dependent manner, suggesting cross-kingdoms communication. The enhancement in motility has been previously ascribed to antioxidant activity, and indeed we observed a rescue in older animals of age-related impairment in motility. Thanks to the unique possibility of visualizing fluorescent particles in living animals, while a biological process takes place, we tested the uptake of fluorescently labelled nanoalgosomes in vivo. We thus demonstrated that nanoalgosomes are uptaken by intestinal cells through an active mechanism and that fluorescence persist up to three days after treatment. Supported by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreements No 801338 and 952183. References [1] Adamo, G. et al., 2021. Nanoalgosomes: Introducing extracellular vesicles produced by microalgae. J Extracell Vesicles. 10(6):e12081. [2] Picciotto, S. et al., 2021. Isolation of extracellular vesicles from microalgae: towards the production of sustainable and natural nanocarriers of bioactive compounds. Biomater Sci 9(8):2917-2930

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