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The University of Southampton
Microvesicle Research Group



Microvesicles hold huge potential as biomarkers, as a way of detecting and following disease development and progression. Microvesicles are an attractive biomarker that allow easily accessible views of cellular events occuring deep within the body. Measurement of microvesicles as biomarkers is relatively non-invasive as they can be detected in a range of bodily fluids including blood, urine, tears, cerebral spinal fluid and breast milk. Current projects in our group researching the potential of microvesicles as biomarkers include 'post stroke infection', 'NAFLD double-blind placebo trial' and 'post-operative bleeding'.


Phenotypic differences in the composition of microvesicles influence the role they play in a range of physiological and pathological cellular activities including coagulation, intercellular communication, inflammation and angiogenesis. Current projects in our group researching the function of microvesicles include 'thrombus formation and dissolution' and 'microvesicle-endothelial interaction'.

Methodology & Technological Development

Due to the very small size of microvesicles, analysis cannot be done accurately using conventional equipment. Our research group has made significant advances to not only improve the equipment used to analyse microvesicles but also ways of identifying them from other constituents in the blood which may resemble them under certain conditions. Current projects in our group researching the methodology and technological development of microvesicle analysis include 'innovation in microvesicle detection'.

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