There is much evidence that angiogenesis is related to mast cells. Mast cells accumulate in many angiogenesis-dependent situations, including tumor growth, rheumatoid arthritis, ovulation, would healing, and tissue repair. Several mast cell mediators are angiogenic and regulate endothelial cell proliferation and function. Stem cell factor, vascular endothelial growth factor, epidermal growth factor, basic fibroblast growth factor, and platelet-derived growth factor induce chemotactic migration of mast cells to sites of neovascularization. Mast cell products such as tryptase also degrade connective tissue matrix to provide space for neovascular sprouts. Angiogenesis has been proposed as a target for anticancer therapy and for treatment of inflammatory disorders such as rheumatoid arthritis. Future studies on the cascade of angiogenic events, including mast cell-target cell interaction, and various intracellular signaling pathways are indicated to provide a new approach for the treatment of cancer and inflammatory disorders and for tissue repair.
Copyright 2002 Wiley-Liss, Inc.