Purpose: To provide an overview of the cellular and molecular factors involved in ocular angiogenesis.
Methods: A literature search and review encompassing a broad range of medical and basic science disciplines was undertaken to survey contemporary insights into the mechanisms of angiogenic stimulation and inhibition.
Results: Ocular angiogenesis is a complex pathophysiologic process. Factors have been isolated that play key roles in the regulation of angiogenesis. The influence of stimulating growth factors is counterbalanced by a number of antiproliferative agents. The net result of these opposing factors on the vascular endothelial cell determines the outcome of angiogenesis homeostasis. Both endogenous and synthetic molecules can regulate ocular angiogenesis.
Conclusions: The isolation and synthesis of molecular regulators of angiogenesis has enhanced our understanding of this process. Clinical trials are underway to determine the efficacy of these agents in controlling pathologic angiogenesis, including that in ocular disease.