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Cell Cycle. 2010 Apr 15;9(8):1466-71. Epub 2010 Apr 15.

Netrin-1 role in angiogenesis: to be or not to be a pro-angiogenic factor?

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Apoptosis, Cancer and Development Laboratory-Equipe labellisée La Ligue, CNRS UMR5238, Université de Lyon, Lyon, France.


Angiogenesis designates the formation of new vessels from preexisting ones, and occurs mainly during development. Tight control of this process is a prerequisite to avoid excess/defect in angiogenesis that are the underlying causes of several diseases conditions. Growing lines of evidences have indicated that some guidance cues are involved in regulation of vascular system elaboration, in addition to their role during nervous system development. In this way, netrin-1 has been involved in control of angiogenesis. However, a controversy has emerged regarding its action, since it was concluded from different studies that this protein was either a pro or an anti-angiogenic factor. Thus, netrin-1 role is still unclear. The aim of this review is to propose clues to explain previously reported discrepancies, in light of the dependence receptors model. Indeed, netrin-1 could likely favor angiogenesis, notably by blocking apoptosis induced by its unbound UNC5B receptor.

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