Dr Aled Clayton
Senior Lecturer, Institute of Cancer & Genetics
The group aims to better understand the complex roles of exosomes in cancer. Exosomes are nano-metre sized vesicles, produced in abundance by malignant cells. Their physiological functions remain incompletely understood.
Data from our group demonstrate exosomes as a mechanism for immune evasion, as cancer exosomes can negatively regulate T cell and NK cell functions.
Cancer exosomes can also exert other influences within the microenvironment, such as promotion of activated stroma, which also assist disease progression. The molecular mechanisms underlying these effects are being examined, to aid in the design of future therapies targeted to attenuating these and other exosomal functions.
There is also potential utility in the vesicles acting as disease biomarkers. Because they are present in biological fluids such as blood, urine and CSF; isolation of vesicles from such fluids provides access to a particular set of molecular markers (proteins, lipids and RNA) that may be related to disease processes.
Recent key publications
- Cancer exosomes trigger mesenchymal stem cell differentiation into pro-angiogenic and pro-invasive myofibroblasts. Oncotarget, Volume 6, 2 January 2015 pp.715-731
- Differentiation of tumour-promoting stromal myofibroblasts by cancer exosomes. Oncogene, Volume 34, 3 January 2015 pp.290-302
- EVpedia: a community web portal for extracellular vesicles research. Bioinformatics November 2014
- Enhancement of T cell responses as a result of synergy between lower doses of radiation and T cell stimulation. J Immunol, Volume 192, 7 April 2014 pp.3101-3110
- Proteomics analysis of cancer exosomes using a novel modified aptamer-based array (SOMAscan™) platform. Mol Cell Proteomics, Volume 13, 4 April 2014 pp.1050-1064
- Vesiclepedia: a compendium for extracellular vesicles with continuous community annotation. Plos Biol, Volume 10, 12 2012 p. e1001450