EV-based liquid biopsy in Glioblastoma
Glioblastoma (GBM) is the most common and lethal primitive tumor of the brain. Biomarkers able to define GBM presence and molecular asset, allowing to tailor the treatment, represent a major unmet clinical need. Moreover, GBM inter and intra-tumoral heterogeneity, its molecular dynamism and blood brain barrier hamper patient-tailored therapies.
GBMs shed extracellular vesicles (EVs) in plasma. We have demonstrated that plasma-EVs represent per se a solid biomarker of GBM presence, while carrying a GBM-specific protein signature not present in controls and lost after GBM resection.
Molecular signature of GBM is dynamic and subjected to continuous changes related to different selection forces (treatment, hypoxia, growth, invasion): plasma EV cargo could reflect these modifications. Thus, we will characterize the genomic and transcriptomic features of plasma EVs and their ability to recapitulate the parental tumor.
Our final aim is to establish plasma-EVs as diagnostic-prognostic biomarker and as a liquid biopsy medium for GBM diagnosis, treatment response, GBM molecular characterization and to follow GBM molecular changes during treatment.
In our studies, we use a combination of patient samples, in vivo models, next-generation sequencing, molecular and computational biology.