Time-dependent vascular regression and permeability changes in established human tumor xenografts induced by an anti-vascular endothelial growth factor/vascular permeability factor antibody

Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1996 Dec 10;93(25):14765-70. doi: 10.1073/pnas.93.25.14765.


The hyperpermeability of tumor vessels to macromolecules, compared with normal vessels, is presumably due to vascular endothelial growth factor/vascular permeability factor (VEGF/VPF) released by neoplastic and/or host cells. In addition, VEGF/VPF is a potent angiogenic factor. Removal of this growth factor may reduce the permeability and inhibit tumor angiogenesis. To test these hypotheses, we transplanted a human glioblastoma (U87), a human colon adenocarcinoma (LS174T), and a human melanoma (P-MEL) into two locations in immunodeficient mice: the cranial window and the dorsal skinfold chamber. The mice bearing vascularized tumors were treated with a bolus (0.2 ml) of either a neutralizing antibody (A4.6.1) (492 micrograms/ml) against VEGF/VPF or PBS (control). We found that tumor vascular permeability to albumin in antibody-treated groups was lower than in the matched controls and that the effect of the antibody was time-dependent and influenced by the mode of injection. Tumor vascular permeability did not respond to i.p. injection of the antibody until 4 days posttreatment. However, the permeability was reduced within 6 h after i.v. injection of the same amount of antibody. In addition to the reduction in vascular permeability, the tumor vessels became smaller in diameter and less tortuous after antibody injections and eventually disappeared from the surface after four consecutive treatments in U87 tumors. These results demonstrate that tumor vascular permeability can be reduced by neutralization of endogenous VEGF/ VPF and suggest that angiogenesis and the maintenance of integrity of tumor vessels require the presence of VEGF/VPF in the tissue microenvironment. The latter finding reveals a new mechanism of tumor vessel regression-i.e., blocking the interactions between VEFG/VPF and endothelial cells or inhibiting VEGF/VPF synthesis in solid tumors causes dramatic reduction in vessel diameter, which may block the passage of blood elements and thus lead to vascular regression.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibodies / administration & dosage*
  • Antibodies / immunology
  • Capillary Permeability / drug effects*
  • Colonic Neoplasms / blood supply*
  • Colonic Neoplasms / immunology
  • Endothelial Growth Factors / immunology*
  • Glioblastoma / blood supply*
  • Glioblastoma / immunology
  • Humans
  • Lymphokines / immunology*
  • Melanoma, Experimental / blood supply*
  • Melanoma, Experimental / immunology
  • Mice
  • Mice, Nude
  • Neoplasms, Experimental / blood supply*
  • Neoplasms, Experimental / immunology
  • Neovascularization, Pathologic / immunology*
  • Neovascularization, Pathologic / prevention & control
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor A
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factors


  • Antibodies
  • Endothelial Growth Factors
  • Lymphokines
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor A
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factors