Research group Joel Nordin

We aim to develop novel targeted therapies by combining extracellular vesicles (EVs) and cell therapies.

Our research

EVs are vesicles produced by all cells for intercellular communication. They can be loaded with macro molecular cargo such as CRISPR-Cas, shRNA, or siRNA for delivery to recipient cells, in vitro as well as in vivo. These macromolecules can be designed specifically to treat any given disease, however, the issue with macro molecular drugs is delivery to the correct target cells in adequate concentrations. Therefore, we aim to use advanced genetic screening methods to develop novel targeting tools for the delivery of macromolecules by EVs as well as local production of loaded EVs by engineered cells.

To increase the local concentration of therapeutic EVs we work with two main projects:

Local production of engineered EVs by genetically modified cells

In this project we aim to modify cells to be activated by specific antigens in the diseased microenvironment, where the activation triggers the production of engineered EVs. This leads to a locally high but systemically low concentrations of therapeutic EVs. At first, this technique will be used to treat pancreatic cancer, which is a cancer type with very poor prognosis.

Novel methods to improve EV targeting

In this project, several novel methods will be evaluated to increase the targeting of EVs to different organs and specific cell populations within an organ. Presently, the targeting capability of nanoparticles is rather inefficient with only a minor percentage of the injected dose reaching the diseased organ or tumor. Within this project, we will use synthetic biology and proteins inspired by viruses to enhance the targeting of EVs to specific cell populations in vivo. The aim is to specifically deliver loaded cargo to hematopoietic stem cells to treat inherited diseases affecting the immune system and healthy blood formation.

Ambitious students who are interested in carrying out their master’s degree project in a student-friendly environment are welcome to contact us for more information.

External funding

Vetenskapsrådet, Evox Therapeutics, CIMED.


Selected publications

Staff and contact

Group leader

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