HYBRID EVENT: You can participate in person at Singapore or Virtually from your home or work.
Stefania Raimondo, Speaker at Speaker for Pharma 2023
University of Palermo, Italy
Title : Extracellular vesicles as delivery vehicles of therapeutic compounds


Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are lipoproteic particles released by organisms belonging to different kingdoms, and research in recent years has indicated they are mainly involved in cross-kingdom interaction. The content of EVs consists of various biomolecules, such as proteins, nucleic acids, sugars, and lipids. Extracellular vesicles possess several characteristics that make them suitable as drug delivery systems, such as the ability to cross biological barriers, stability in the circulatory system, and safety. EVs represent an opportunity for the research community to transform cellular structures into new forms of treatment for various diseases, exploiting what nature already offers: systems that deliver biological messages addressed to other cells of the organism. Extracellular vesicles from plants (PDEVs) have recently attracted attention for the therapeutic opportunities that they offer. EV-like structures have been purified from different citrus fruits, grapes, and tomatoes; their anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and anti-tumor properties have been described. Furthermore, plant-EVs possess several characteristics that make them suitable as drug delivery systems, such as the safety and possibility of large-scale production. Our research group is currently investigating the possibility to use tangerine-derived EVs as a vehicle for the delivery of anti-tumor siRNAs. In conclusion, the possibility of using edible extracellular vesicles, from both mammalians and plants, for the loading of compounds with therapeutic purposes, of vegetal or synthetic origin, appears very promising.

Audience Take Away Notes:

  • I believe that the presentation and discussion on extracellular vesicles can help the audience in taking into consideration these systems for further research in drug development.
  • The research on extracellular vesicles is increasing and several researchers with multidisciplinary backgrounds could be involved in the better definition of these nanoparticles as delivery systems.
  • The use of extracellular vesicles as a drug delivery system may overcome different problems associated with current therapies such as toxicity and non-specific cellular targets.


Dr. Raimondo is an Assistant Professor at the University of Palermo (Italy). In 2014 she obtained an international Ph.D. in Immuno-Pharmacology from the University of Palermo under the mentorship of Professor Riccardo Alessandro. During her PhD program, she moved for 5 months to Gotheborg, Sweden. In 2019 Stefania has been a StarShip Health Innovation fellow, an educational initiative in collaboration with leading European academic and health industrial partners. She has published more than 30 research articles in peer-reviewed journals.