Control of vascular morphogenesis and homeostasis through the angiopoietin-Tie system

Nat Rev Mol Cell Biol. 2009 Mar;10(3):165-77. doi: 10.1038/nrm2639.


Angiogenesis, the growth of blood vessels, is a fundamental biological process that controls embryonic development and is also involved in numerous life-threatening human diseases. Much work in the field of angiogenesis research has centred on the vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)-VEGF receptor system. The Tie receptors and their angiopoietin (Ang) ligands have been identified as the second vascular tissue-specific receptor Tyr kinase system. Ang-Tie signalling is essential during embryonic vessel assembly and maturation, and functions as a key regulator of adult vascular homeostasis. The structural characteristics and the spatio-temporal regulation of the expression of receptors and ligands provide unique insights into the functions of this vascular signalling system.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Angiopoietins / metabolism*
  • Animals
  • Blood Vessels / growth & development*
  • Homeostasis*
  • Humans
  • Models, Biological
  • Morphogenesis*
  • Receptors, TIE / metabolism*
  • Signal Transduction


  • Angiopoietins
  • Receptors, TIE