Author(s): Klein M, Catargi B
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Abstract Angiogenesis is a physiological process involving the growth of new vessels from pre-existing vasculature. Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) is an important regulator of both benign and malignant disease processes in the thyroid gland. The VEGF family includes seven members respectively named VEGF-A, also known as VPF (vascular permeability factor), VEGF-B, VEGF-C, VEGF-D, all described in mammals, VEGF-E (found in Parapoxviridae), VEGF-F (also called svVEGF, for snake venom VEGF, found in viper venom) and PlGF (placental growth factor). Thyrocytes are able to synthesize and secrete VEGF. VEGF-A is implicated in tumour growth and metastasis via blood vessels while VEGF-C and VEGF-D, involved in lymphangiogenesis, favour metastasis to the cervical lymph nodes in papillary thyroid carcinomas. High levels of VEGF expression in thyroid tumour cells may correlate with a poorer outcome in papillary thyroid carcinomas. Because of its important role in malignant angiogenesis, VEGF is the preferential target of a new variety of therapeutic agents called angiogenesis inhibitors.
This article was published in Ann Endocrinol (Paris)
and referenced in Journal of Thyroid Disorders & Therapy