Establishing a link between oncogenes and tumor angiogenesis

Mol Med. 1998 May;4(5):286-95.


We have tried to stress that mutant oncogenes or overexpressed, nonmutated proto-oncogenes, in addition to their direct affect on promoting aberrant tumor cell proliferation (and survival), may possess a crucial indirect means of stimulating tumor cell growth through regulation of angiogenesis. This effect would never be observed in tissue culture studies of oncogene function using pure cultures of tumor cells, which probably helps explain why the pro-angiogenic function of oncogenes has not been appreciated until only relatively recently. Indeed, the very first indication of a possible contributory role of oncogenes, such as ras and myc, to tumor angiogenesis was first reported by Thompson et al. in 1989, who used reconstituted organ cultures of the mouse prostate gland for their studies (69). This potentially important contribution of oncogenes to tumor growth and development may prove to have an impact on how various signal transduction inhibitors that are now in early phase clinical trials, e.g., monoclonal neutralizing antibodies to the human EGF receptor (70), function in vivo as anti-tumor agents.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Genes, Tumor Suppressor
  • Humans
  • Neoplasms / blood supply*
  • Neoplasms / genetics*
  • Neovascularization, Pathologic / genetics*
  • Neovascularization, Pathologic / prevention & control
  • Oncogenes*
  • Signal Transduction / genetics