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Table 1 Extravesicles subtype characteristics

From: The exosome journey: from biogenesis to uptake and intracellular signalling

  Exosomes Microvesicles Apoptotic bodies
Origin Endocytic origin Plasma membrane budding Blebbing
Size 30–200 nm 100–1000 nm  > 1000 nm
Density 1.13–1.19 g/ml 1.04–1.07 g/ml 1.16–1.28 g/ml
Shape Spheroid Irregular Variable
Composition Proteins, nucleic acids, lipids and metabolites Proteins, nucleic acids, lipids and metabolites DNA fragments and histone, chromatin remnants, cytosol portions, degraded proteins
Typical constituent proteins Tetraspanins, ESCRT proteins (Alix, TSG101), integrins, heat shock proteins Integrins, selectins, CD40 ligand, flotillin-2, adenosine diphosphate ribosylation factor 6, phosphatidylserine Annexin V, phosphatidylserine
Function Cell–cell communication Cell–cell communication Product of programmed cell death. Facilitate clearance of apoptotic cells
References [21, 25, 28, 185, 186] [5, 21, 22, 25, 185, 186] [21, 23,24,25,26]