1. Departments of Biological Sciences, University of Memphis, Memphis, TN 38152. USA.
2. Departments of Biology and Advanced Placement Biology, White Station High School, Memphis, TN 38117. USA.
3. Departments of Biology and Advanced Placement Biology, White Station High School, Memphis, TN 38117. USA.
4. Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, University of Tennessee Health Science Center, Memphis, TN 38163. USA.
Angiogenesis is a significant event in a wide range of healthy and diseased conditions. This process frequently involves vasodilation and an increase in vascular permeability. Numerous players referred to as angiogenic factors, work in tandem to facilitate the outgrowth of endothelial cells (EC) and the consequent vascularity. Conversely, angiogenic factors could also feature in pathological conditions.
Angiogenesis is a critical factor in the development of tumors and metastases in numerous cancers. An increased level of angiogenesis is associated with decreased survival in breast cancer patients. Therefore, a good understanding of the angiogenic mechanism holds a promise of providing effective treatments for breast cancer progression, thereby enhancing patients' survival. Disrupting the initiation and progression of this process by targeting angiogenic factors such as vascular endothelial growth factor (Vegf)-one of the most potent member of the VEGF family- or by targeting transcription factors, such as Hypoxia-Inducible Factors (HIFs) that act as angiogenic regulators, have been considered potential treatment options for several types of cancers.
The objective of this review is to highlight the mechanism of angiogenesis in diseases, specifically its role in the progression of malignancy in breast cancer, as well as to highlight the undergoing research in the development of angiogenesis-targeting therapies.
Keywords: angiogenesis, VEGF, Breast cancer, metastasis, angiogenesis, hypoxia, vascular diseases, anti-angiogenic therapies