Author(s): Paulis YW, Soetekouw PM, Verheul HM, TjanHeijnen VC, Griffioen AW, Paulis YW, Soetekouw PM, Verheul HM, TjanHeijnen VC, Griffioen AW
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Abstract Solid tumour growth is dependent on the development of an adequate blood supply. For years, sprouting angiogenesis has been considered an exclusive mechanism of tumour vascularization. However, over the last years, several other mechanisms have been identified, including vessel-co-option, intussusception, recruitment of endothelial precursor cells (EPCs) and even mechanisms that do not involve endothelial cells, a process called vasculogenic mimicry (VM). The latter describes a mechanism by which highly aggressive tumour cells can form vessel-like structures themselves, by virtue of their high plasticity. VM has been observed in several tumour types and its occurrence is strongly associated with a poor prognosis. This review will focus on signalling molecules and cascades involved in VM. In addition, we will discuss the presence of VM in relation to ongoing cancer research. Finally, we describe the clinical significance of VM regarding anti-angiogenesis treatment modalities. Copyright 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
This article was published in Biochim Biophys Acta
and referenced in Journal of Lung Cancer Diagnosis & Treatment