Mitophagy is crucial for maintaining mitochondrial quality. However, its assessment in vivo is challenging. The endosomal–lysosomal system is a more accessible pathway through which subtypes of extracellular vesicles (EVs), which also contain mitochondrial constituents, are released for disposal. The inclusion of mitochondrial components into EVs occurs in the setting of mild mitochondrial damage and during impairment of lysosomal function. By releasing mitochondrial-derived vesicles (MDVs), cells limit the unload of mitochondrial damage-associated molecular patterns with proinflammatory activity. Both positive and negative effects of EVs on recipient cells have been described. Whether this is due to the production of EVs other than those containing mitochondria, such as MDVs, holding specific biological functions is currently unknown. Evidence on the existence of different MDV subtypes has been produced. However, their characterization is not always pursued, which would be relevant to exploring the dynamics of mitochondrial quality control in health and disease. Furthermore, MDV classification may be instrumental in understanding their biological roles and promoting their implementation as biomarkers in clinical studies.
Picca, A., Guerra, F., Calvani, R., Coelho-Júnior, H. J., Landi, F., Bucci, C., Marzetti, E., Mitochondrial-Derived Vesicles: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly, <<INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF MOLECULAR SCIENCES>>, 2023; 24 (18): 1-17. [doi:10.3390/ijms241813835] [https://hdl.handle.net/10807/249617]