The possibility that exosomes function as a new form of inter cellular communication to establish and maintain brain circuits is beginning to be investigated. Exosomes are released from cells and interact with other receptor cells to mediate physiological changes. All brain cells release exosomes including neural stem cells, neurons, astrocytes, microglia, oligodendrocytes and endothelial cells. The aim of this review is to gather current evidence on the protective, anti-inflammatory and regenerative functions of exosomes in ischemic stroke in rats. Asystematic search of sensitive and specific literature was carried out in the following database search engines: Medline, EMBASE, Web of Science, Scopus, TRIP database, SciELO and LILACS with free and MeSH terms data. MSC generated exosomes can be used in the treatment of stroke. Oligodendrocyte exosomes also exert a variety of effects on receptor neurons and influence a wide spectrum of neuronal physiology. Together these results suggest that MSC exosome-mediated transfer of miR-133b to astrocytes and neurons, thus regulating gene expression, benefiting both neurite remodeling, such as functional recovery following a stroke. It would be important in the future to develop methods to quantify and characterize exosomes in brain ischemia. This would allow correlation between the amount of exosomes in the brain and functional recovery providing information relevant to its action mechanisms.
KEY WORDS: Exosomes; Neuroprotection; Brain chemia; Cerebrovascular attack; Rats.