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Vessel Cooption, Regression, and Growth in Tumors Mediated by Angiopoietins and VEGF

Science  18 Jun 1999:
Vol. 284, Issue 5422, pp. 1994-1998
DOI: 10.1126/science.284.5422.1994

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Abstract

In contrast with the prevailing view that most tumors and metastases begin as avascular masses, evidence is presented here that a subset of tumors instead initially grows by coopting existing host vessels. This coopted host vasculature does not immediately undergo angiogenesis to support the tumor but instead regresses, leading to a secondarily avascular tumor and massive tumor cell loss. Ultimately, however, the remaining tumor is rescued by robust angiogenesis at the tumor margin. The expression patterns of the angiogenic antagonist angiopoietin-2 and of pro-angiogenic vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) suggest that these proteins may be critical regulators of this balance between vascular regression and growth.

  • * To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail: gdy{at}regpha.com (G.D.Y.); stan.wiegand{at}regpha.com (S.J.W.)

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