Tumor angiogenesis revisited: Regulators and clinical implications

Med Res Rev. 2017 Nov;37(6):1231-1274. doi: 10.1002/med.21452. Epub 2017 Jun 23.


Since Judah Folkman hypothesized in 1971 that angiogenesis is required for solid tumor growth, numerous studies have been conducted to unravel the angiogenesis process, analyze its role in primary tumor growth, metastasis and angiogenic diseases, and to develop inhibitors of proangiogenic factors. These studies have led in 2004 to the approval of the first antiangiogenic agent (bevacizumab, a humanized antibody targeting vascular endothelial growth factor) for the treatment of patients with metastatic colorectal cancer. This approval launched great expectations for the use of antiangiogenic therapy for malignant diseases. However, these expectations have not been met and, as knowledge of blood vessel formation accumulates, many of the original paradigms no longer hold. Therefore, the regulators and clinical implications of angiogenesis need to be revisited. In this review, we discuss recently identified angiogenesis mediators and pathways, new concepts that have emerged over the past 10 years, tumor resistance and toxicity associated with the use of currently available antiangiogenic treatment and potentially new targets and/or approaches for malignant and nonmalignant neovascular diseases.

Keywords: angiogenesis; endothelial cell metabolism; growth factors; novel concepts; tumor resistance.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Angiogenesis Inhibitors / physiology
  • Angiogenesis Inhibitors / therapeutic use
  • Animals
  • Humans
  • Neoplasms / blood supply*
  • Neoplasms / drug therapy
  • Neoplasms / pathology
  • Neovascularization, Pathologic / metabolism
  • Neovascularization, Pathologic / pathology


  • Angiogenesis Inhibitors