Extracellular Vesicles in Cancer Detection: Hopes and Hypes

Tony Hu, Joy Wolfram, Sudhir Srivastava

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

81 Scopus citations


Early cancer diagnosis is critical for improving patient survival and mortality rates, but most diagnostics on solid tumors rely on imaging tests with limited sensitivity and specificity to identify potential cases, which are then confirmed by tissue biopsies. However, this process is usually not suitable for cancer screening or evaluation of tumor responses to treatment. Liquid biopsies have the potential to bridge this gap, but few such assays have been approved for cancer applications. Extracellular vesicles hold particular promise for liquid biopsy diagnostics but are currently limited by the lack of robust methods for isolation and analysis. New isolation and analysis techniques, however, show promise to improve the clinical utility of extracellular vesicle-based cancer diagnosis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)122-133
Number of pages12
JournalTrends in Cancer
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2021


  • cancer
  • early detection
  • extracellular vesicle
  • liquid biopsy
  • Early Detection of Cancer/methods
  • Extracellular Vesicles/genetics
  • Liquid Biopsy/methods
  • Biomarkers, Tumor/blood
  • Humans
  • Circulating Tumor DNA/blood
  • Neoplasms/blood

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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