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Am J Physiol Cell Physiol. 2001 Jun;280(6):C1358-66.

Role of vascular endothelial growth factor in regulation of physiological angiogenesis.

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Department of Molecular Oncology, Genentech, Inc., South San Francisco, CA 94080, USA.


Evidence accumulating over the last decade has established the fundamental role of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) as a key regulator of normal and abnormal angiogenesis. The biological effects of VEGF are mediated by two tyrosine kinase receptors, Flt-1 (VEGFR-1) and KDR (VEGFR-2). The signaling and biological properties of these two receptors are strikingly different. VEGF is essential for early development of the vasculature to the extent that inactivation of even a single allele of the VEGF gene results in embryonic lethality. VEGF is also required for female reproductive functions and endochondral bone formation. Substantial evidence also implicates VEGF as an angiogenic mediator in tumors and intraocular neovascular syndromes, and numerous clinical trials are presently testing the hypothesis that inhibition of VEGF may have therapeutic value.

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