Pia first bumped into ”microparticles” during her PhD studies, when she saw a platelet-derived staining of fibrin strands in thrombus-formation mimicking system of blood flow resulting in her first EV publication in 1996 . For the PhD, she studied the role of collagen receptors in platelet functions including procoagulant activity. In 2000-2004, she did a post doc in the University of Cambridge U.K, on platelet collagen receptors. Upon returning to Finland, she worked as an Academy of Finland –funded independent post doctoral researcher and research fellow with the aim to develop tools for integrin affinity states with phage display before becoming a university lecturer in Biochemistry of Health in 2008. By then, the field of EVs had started to bloom, enabling her to return to the topic of her passion. She has also been lucky to spark others to join in the quest to try to understand the powerful communication of the cells’ own social media, EVs, thereby generating the EV group.

In 2016, the EV group was proud to open the world’s first a core facility dedicated to EVs jointly with Dr. Maija Puhka in FIMM to offer our expertise to other researchers in Finland and internationally.
 

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Katariina is interested in the diagnostic and therapeutic potential of EVs. Currently, she studies platelet-derived EVs in the context of cardiovascular diseases. She is especially interested in how different platelet activators relevant to cardiovascular diseases affect the number and composition of platelet-derived EVs, and how such EVs may contribute to the disease development. Katariina is also part of a EURAMET EMPIR project aiming to standardize concentration measurements of EVs for medical diagnoses.

In her Academy of Finland funded project Mari focuses on platelet-derived EVs and their potential use in regenerative medicine as natural therapeutics. She is interested in omics (proteomics and metabolomics) and currently investigates how the activating platelets with various agonists affects the cargo of platelet-derived EVs. She also coordinates the EV core in Viikki.

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Johanna is interested in platelet biology and the innate therapeutic and biomarker potential of platelet-derived EVs. She is currently working on her PhD under the Extracellular Vesicle Ecosystem (EVE) project supervised by PI Pia Siljander, Dr. Mari Palviainen and Dr. Saara Laitinen (Finnish Red Cross Blood Service). In her work, Johanna focuses on the characterization of the subpopulations of naturally occurring and agonist-induced platelet-derived EVs from clinical-grade platelet products and their role in tissue healing and regeneration.

Zeynep is interested in cancer EVs to determine candidate biomarker molecules through metabolomics and small RNA analyses. She is also involved in a project to identify the interactions between cancer cells and platelets through EVs in a 3D model and to utilize platelet EVs for drug delivery. She works closely with Mari and Alessandra.  

Maria Aatonen, MSc, currently working at Faculty of Biological and Enviromental Sciences, UH

Heikki Saari, PhD, currently working at Finnish Red Cross Blood Services

Sami Valkonen, PhD, currently working at Division of Pharmaceutical Biosciences, UH

Kuan Kiat Chew, MSc

Maarit Neuvonen, PhD, currently working at Targovax Oy

Snehadri SInha, MSc, PhD student at Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Diseases, Medical Faculty, UH 

Maarit Takatalo-Laine, PhD, currently working at Thermo Fischer

Elisa Lazaro Ibañez, PhD, currently working at Astra Zeneca

Saara Kauremaa, BSc, currently working at MobiDiag

Anna Lindelöf MSc, Currently working at Bio-Rad Laboratories

 

Natalia Koralewska, PhD, Institute of Bioorganic Chemistry, Polish Academy of Sciences, 2019

Jesus Gullon Sanz, BSc, 2018

Arturs Abols, PhD, Latvian Biomedical Research and Study Centre, 2016 (http://ar.iiarjournals.org/content/38/9/5139.long)

Manuel de Aledo Gonzales BSc, 2016

Maija Puhka, Research coordinator

Maija works as a project manager to explore commercialization options for an innovative and scalable EV isolation method (Business Finland TUTL program and Spark Finland mentoring). She is especially interested to help researchers to grab the potential of the fast developing field with improved EV technologies. The EV Core facility, of which functions Maija is heading at FIMM, has the same focus. Maija also studies the EV contained (mi)RNA biomarkers for diabetic kidney disease and urological cancers at FIMM with MD, PhD, prof. Leif Groop and Antti Rannikko.