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Obstet Gynecol Int. 2013;2013:859619. doi: 10.1155/2013/859619. Epub 2013 May 26.

Angiogenesis and endometriosis.

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Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Division of Human Reproduction, Federal University of Minas Gerais, 310130-100 Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil.


A comprehensive review was performed to survey the role of angiogenesis in the pathogenesis of endometriosis. This is a multifactorial disease in which the development and maintenance of endometriotic implants depend on their invasive capacity and angiogenic potential. The peritoneal fluid of patients with endometriosis is a complex suspension carrying inflammatory cytokines, growth factors, steroid hormones, proangiogenic factors, macrophages, and endometrial and red blood cells. These cells and their signaling products concur to promote the spreading of new blood vessels at the endometriotic lesions and surroundings, which contributes to the endometriotic implant survival. Experimental studies of several antiangiogenic agents demonstrated the regression of endometriotic lesions by reducing their blood supply. Further studies are necessary before these novel agents can be introduced into clinical practice, in particular the establishment of the safety of anti-angiogenic medications in women who are seeking to become pregnant.

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