• Authors: Lavado-Garcia J . et al.
  • Year: 2020
  • Journal: J Proteome Res
  • Applications: in vitro / DNA / PEIpro
  • Cell type: HEK293SF-3F6
    Description: Human embryonic kidney Fibroblast cell line genetically modified with a truncated version of EBNA1 which grows in suspension and chemically defined serum-free medium.


Vaccine therapies based on virus-like particles (VLPs) are currently in the spotlight due to their potential for generating high immunogenic responses while presenting fewer side effects than conventional vaccines. These self-assembled nanostructures resemble the native conformation of the virus but lack genetic material. They are becoming a promising platform for vaccine candidates against several diseases due to the ability of modifying their membrane with antigens from different viruses. The coproduction of extracellular vesicles (EVs) when producing VLPs is a key phenomenon currently still under study. In order to characterize this extracellular environment, a quantitative proteomics approach has been carried out. Three conditions were studied: non-transfected, transfected with an empty plasmid as control, and transfected with a plasmid coding for HIV-1 Gag polyprotein. A shift in EV biogenesis has been detected upon transfection, changing the production from large to small EVs. Another remarkable trait found was the presence of DNA being secreted within vesicles smaller than 200 nm. Studying the protein profile of these biological nanocarriers, it was observed that EVs were reflecting an overall energy homeostasis disruption via mitochondrial protein deregulation. Also, immunomodulatory proteins like ITGB1, ENO3, and PRDX5 were identified and quantified in VLP and EV fractions. These findings provide insight on the nature of the VLP extracellular environment defining the characteristics and protein profile of EVs, with potential to develop new downstream separation strategies or using them as adjuvants in viral therapies.