EV (extracellular vesicle) biology is a rapidly expanding field. These heterogeneous membrane vesicles, which are shed from virtually all cell types, collectively represent a new dimension of intercellular communication in normal physiology and disease. They have been shown to deliver infectious and pathogenic agents to non-infected cells whereas in cancers they are thought to condition the tumor microenvironment. Their presence in body fluids and inherent capacity for systemic delivery point to their clinical promise. All of the above only intensifies the need to better understand the classification, mode of biogenesis, and contents of the different subtypes of EVs. This article focusses on vesicle subtypes labeled as exosomes and MVs (microvesicles) and discusses the biogenesis and release of these vesicles from cells.

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