VEGF and the quest for tumour angiogenesis factors

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The ability of tumours to induce new blood-vessel formation has been a major focus of cancer research over the past few decades, and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) is now known to be central to this process. The quest for VEGF and other factors that promote tumour angiogenesis was initiated many decades ago, and a long and complicated path has led to the development of inhibitors of these molecules as anticancer agents. How did this field begin, and how have we arrived at our present understanding of the role of VEGF in tumour progression.

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Figure 1: The earliest in vivo images of tumour angiogenesis.
Figure 2: Effects of an anti-VEGF monoclonal antibody on angiogenesis induced by the A673 rhabdomyosarcoma cell line, as seen in the dorsal skinfold transparent chamber model in the mouse.


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I thank E. Filvaroff and N. van Bruggen for critically reading this manuscript.

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