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Cancer Cell. 2009 Jan 6;15(1):21-34. doi: 10.1016/j.ccr.2008.12.004.

PDGF-C mediates the angiogenic and tumorigenic properties of fibroblasts associated with tumors refractory to anti-VEGF treatment.

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Genentech Inc, 1 DNA Way, South San Francisco, CA 94080, USA.


Tumor- or cancer-associated fibroblasts (TAFs or CAFs) from different tumors exhibit distinct angiogenic and tumorigenic properties. Unlike normal skin fibroblasts or TAFs from TIB6 tumors that are sensitive to anti-VEGF treatment (TAF-TIB6), TAFs from resistant EL4 tumors (TAF-EL4) can stimulate TIB6 tumor growth even when VEGF is inhibited. We show that platelet-derived growth factor C (PDGF-C) is upregulated in TAFs from resistant tumors. PDGF-C-neutralizing antibodies blocked the angiogenesis induced by such TAFs in vivo, slowed the growth of EL4 and admixture (TAF-EL4 + TIB6) tumors, and exhibited additive effects with anti-VEGF-A antibodies. Hence, our data reveal an additional mechanism for TAF-mediated tumorigenesis and suggest that some tumors may overcome inhibition of VEGF-mediated angiogenesis through upregulation of PDGF-C.

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