Excessive exosome release is the pathogenic pathway linking a lysosomal deficiency to generalized fibrosis.
Sci Adv. 2019 07 ;5(7):eaav3270. Epub 2019 Jul 17. PMID: 31328155
Diantha van de Vlekkert
Lysosomal exocytosis is a ubiquitous process negatively regulated by neuraminidase 1 (NEU1), a sialidase mutated in the glycoprotein storage disease sialidosis. Inmice, excessive lysosomal exocytosis is at the basis of disease pathogenesis. Yet, the tissue-specific molecular consequences of this deregulated pathway are still unfolding. We now report that in muscle connective tissue,fibroblasts have features of myofibroblasts and are proliferative, migratory, and exocytose large amounts of exosomes. These nanocarriers loaded with activated transforming growth factor-β and wingless-related integration site (WNT)/β-catenin signaling molecules propagate fibrotic signals to other cells, maintaining the tissue in a prolonged transitional status. Myofibroblast-derived exosomes fed to normal fibroblasts convert them into myofibroblasts, changing the recipient cells'proliferative and migratory properties. These findings reveal an unexpected exosome-mediated signaling pathway downstream of NEU1 deficiency that propagates a fibrotic disease and could be implicated in idiopathic forms of fibrosis in humans.