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Oncogene. 2000 Dec 11;19(53):6122-9.

Mechanisms of angiogenesis and their use in the inhibition of tumor growth and metastasis.

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Molecular/Cancer Biology Laboratory and Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research, University of Helsinki, Finland.


There is a constant requirement for vascular supply in solid tumors. Tumor-associated neovascularization allows the tumor cells to express their critical growth advantage. Axillary lymph node status is the most important prognostic factor in operable breast cancer, and experimental and clinical evidence suggests that the process of metastasis is also angiogenesis-dependent. Various angiogenic growth factors and cytokines induce neovascularization in tumors, namely members of the vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and angiopoietin (Ang) gene families. A strong correlation has been found between VEGF expression and increased tumor microvasculature, malignancy, and metastasis in breast cancer. Anti-angiogenic therapy approaches offer a new promising anti-cancer strategy and a remarkably diverse group of over 20 such drugs is currently undergoing evaluation in clinical trials.

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