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Chin J Cancer. 2013 Jun;32(6):297-302. doi: 10.5732/cjc.012.10319. Epub 2013 Feb 19.

The VEGF signaling pathway in cancer: the road ahead.

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Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, Victoria, Australia.


The vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) family of soluble protein growth factors consists of key mediators of angiogenesis and lymphangiogenesis in the context of tumor biology. The members of the family, VEGF-A (also known as VEGF), VEGF-B, VEGF-C, VEGF-D, and placenta growth factor (PlGF), play important roles in vascular biology in both normal physiology and pathology. The generation of a humanized neutralizing antibody to VEGF-A (bevacizumab, also known as Avastin) and the demonstration of its benefit in numerous human cancers have confirmed the merit of an anti-angiogenesis approach to cancer treatment and have validated the VEGF-A signaling pathway as a therapeutic target. Other members of the VEGF family are now being targeted, and their relevance to human cancer and the development of resistance to anti-VEGF-A treatment are being evaluated in the clinic. Here, we discuss the potential of targeting VEGF family members in the diagnosis and treatment of cancer.

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