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Small extracellular vesicle-based delivery of interleukin-10 improves treatment of experimental autoimmune uveitis.

Non-infectious uveitis is an intraocular autoimmune disease mainly characterized by immune dysregulation of the eye, which may cause blindness if not well treated. Interleukin 10 (IL-10) is a potent cytokine with multiple immunoregulatory functions. However, it's in vivo activity is unstable owing to its inherent protein instability and short plasma half-life. Therefore, our previous research tried to establish IL-10-overexpressing MSC-sEVs (sEVs-IL10) using lentiviral transfection. While this approach indeed improved drug delivery, it also suffered from tedious procedures and limited loading efficiency. Accordingly, we constructed a novel MSC-sEVs-based delivery system for IL-10 (IL-10@sEVs) by sonication. The obtained formulation (IL-10@sEVs) had relatively higher loading efficiency and exerted a more profound immunomodulatory effect than sEVs-IL10 in vitro. Furthermore, IL-10@sEVs had significant therapeutic effects in a mouse model of experimental autoimmune uveitis (EAU) by decreasing the percentage of Th17 cells, increasing regulatory T cells in the eye, and draining lymph nodes. In summary, sonication outperforms conventional transfection methods for loading IL-10 into MSC-sEVs.

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