Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor and Angiogenesis

Pharmacol Rev. 2004 Dec;56(4):549-80. doi: 10.1124/pr.56.4.3.


Angiogenesis is a hallmark of wound healing, the menstrual cycle, cancer, and various ischemic and inflammatory diseases. A rich variety of pro- and antiangiogenic molecules have already been discovered. Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) is an interesting inducer of angiogenesis and lymphangiogenesis, because it is a highly specific mitogen for endothelial cells. Signal transduction involves binding to tyrosine kinase receptors and results in endothelial cell proliferation, migration, and new vessel formation. In this article, the role of VEGF in physiological and pathological processes is reviewed. We also discuss how modulation of VEGF expression creates new therapeutic possibilities and describe recent developments in this field.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Angiogenesis Modulating Agents / pharmacology
  • Animals
  • Humans
  • Neovascularization, Pathologic / physiopathology*
  • Neovascularization, Physiologic / physiology*
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factors / classification
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factors / physiology*


  • Angiogenesis Modulating Agents
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factors