Invest in Exosomes Before Wall Street Does
Investors who aren’t catching wind of the power of exosomes are missing a rapidly growing science as it relates to diagnostics, drug delivery, and novel disease treatments. Exosomes, nano-size extracellular vesicles secreted by nearly all somatic cells and found in body fluids, were grossly misunderstood historically, but that is all changing. A growing body of research is detailing the relevance of exosomes in cellular health and the important function that they serve in cellular communication by ferrying proteins and genetic materials between cells.
James McCullough, chief executive at privately held Exosome Diagnostics, appropriately has dubbed exosomes as “the body’s Federal Express system.” Perhaps more succinctly, Dr. Douglas Taylor of Exosome Sciences, a subsidiary of Aethlon Medical (OTCBB:AEMD), has said that exosomes are akin to the “Twitter of cells” because of the messages they deliver from cell to cell.
Watch an interview with Dr. Douglas Taylor explaining the role of exosomes and the benefits of exosome diagnostics:
Exosome Diagnostics is developing biofluid-based molecular diagnostic tests for use in personalized medicine, with their lead product being a test that captures exosomes in urine for analysis of ribonucleic acid to detect mutations as an indication of prostate cancer.
A select few public companies have emerged as pioneers in the exosome space, including Life Technologies (NASDAQ:LIFE), Aethlon Medical, and Eli Lilly & Co. (NYSE:LLY). By itself, Eli Lilly is not really a player in the space, but it forged a partnership with Exosome Diagnostics in September to gain access to the company’s diagnostic tests to identify gene mutations and exosome expression levels in the blood that might help them better predict drug response and disease recurrence.
Another way to try and benefit from Exosome Diagnostics’ test kit advancements is to take a look at QIAGEN N.V. (NASDAQ:QGEN) as the two companies partnered in July to develop and commercialize products for capturing and processing RNA and DNA from biofluid exosomes and other microvesicles. The companies hope to have co-branded kits commercialized in the first half of 2014.