Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) is an essential molecule in the development and formation of mammalian blood vessels in health and disease. VEGF is also increasingly implicated in other biological processes including renal development and pathophysiology. The biological activities of VEGF in vivo and in its target cells in culture are mediated through two receptor protein tyrosine kinases, KDR/Flk-1 and Flt-1. KDR/Flk-1 is able to mediate the tyrosine phosphorylation of several cellular components as well as the generation of second messengers. Recent findings have revealed novel signaling mechanisms which may mediate the biological actions of VEGF. In contrast, the signal transduction mechanisms triggered by Flt-1 remain largely unknown.