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Cell Mol Life Sci. 2013 Mar;70(6):1055-66. doi: 10.1007/s00018-012-1110-6. Epub 2012 Aug 25.

Flow control in our vessels: vascular valves make sure there is no way back.

Author information

1
Lymphatic Development Laboratory, Cancer Research UK London Research Institute, 44 Lincoln's Inn Fields, London, WC2A 3LY, UK. e.bazigou@imperial.ac.uk

Abstract

The efficient transport of blood and lymph relies on competent intraluminal valves that ensure unidirectional fluid flow through the vessels. In the lymphatic vessels, lack of luminal valves causes reflux of lymph and can lead to lymphedema, while dysfunction of venous valves is associated with venous hypertension, varicose veins, and thrombosis that can lead to edema and ulcerations. Despite their clinical importance, the mechanisms that regulate valve formation are poorly understood and have only recently begun to be characterized. Here, we discuss new findings regarding the development of venous and lymphatic valves that indicate the involvement of common molecular mechanisms in regulating valve formation in different vascular beds.

PMID:
22922986
PMCID:
PMC3578722
DOI:
10.1007/s00018-012-1110-6
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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