Author(s): Tomanek RJ, Schatteman GC
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Abstract Angiogenesis, the formation of vessels from pre-existing vessels, is of critical importance not only during normal growth, but also in pathological situations. In the latter, some diseases are enhanced by excessive vascular growth (e.g., tumors), whereas in others inadequate vascular growth contributes to morbidity and mortality (e. g., ischemic heart disease). Our current state of knowledge makes it clear that the cascade of angiogenic events depends on complex processes that include cell-cell interactions, various intracellular signaling pathways, and the appropriate extracellular microenvironment. The literature regarding angiogenesis has increased exponentially during the last decade. Progress in this area is largely a consequence of advances in our understanding of angiogenic growth factor and cytokine function, in part due to the determination of their complete amino acid sequences and cloning of their genes. Other factors also play key roles in angiogenesis, including the extracellular matrix, adhesion molecules and their inhibitors, and metabolic and mechanical factors. The potential for developing therapeutic protocols has been enhanced by data from both in vitro and in vivo studies and has provided the rationale for clinic trials. Angiogenic therapy strategies include inhibition of aberrant angiogenesis, as seen in tumors or diabetes, as well as stimulation of angiogenesis in conditions of ischemia, such as ischemic heart or peripheral vascular disease. Anat Rec (New Anat) 261:126-135, 2000. Copyright 2000 Wiley-Liss, Inc.
This article was published in Anat Rec
and referenced in Journal of Clinical & Experimental Cardiology