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Autoimmunity. 2009 Nov;42(7):563-73.

Angiogenesis in rheumatoid arthritis.

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  • 1Department of Rheumatology, Institute of Medicine, University of Debrecen Medical and Health Sciences Center, Debrecen, H-4032, Hungary.


Angiogenesis is the formation of new capillaries from pre-existing vessels. A number of soluble and cell-bound factors may stimulate neovascularization. The perpetuation of angiogenesis involving numerous soluble and cell surface-bound mediators has been associated with rheumatoid arthritis (RA). These angiogenic mediators, among others, include growth factors, primarily vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and hypoxia-inducible factors (HIFs), as well as pro-inflammatory cytokines, various chemokines, matrix components, cell adhesion molecules, proteases and others. Among the several potential angiogenesis inhibitors, targeting of VEGF, HIF-1, angiogenic chemokines, tumor necrosis factor-alpha and the alpha(V)beta(3) integrin may attenuate the action of angiogenic mediators and thus synovial angiogenesis. In addition, some naturally produced or synthetic compounds including angiostatin, endostatin, paclitaxel, fumagillin analogues, 2-methoxyestradiol and thalidomide may be included in the management of RA.

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