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      Vascular Effects of FGF-2 and VEGF-B in Rabbits with Bilateral Hind Limb Ischemia

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          Aims: To assess fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF-2) and vascular endothelial growth factor-B (VEGF-B) effects on flow reserve and morphological adaptation in the rabbit ischemic hind limb. Methods: Following bilateral femoral artery ligation, calf blood pressure (C<sub>BP</sub>), flow reserve, collateral artery numbers and capillary numbers were assessed. Treatment consisted of rabbit serum albumin (RSA), FGF-2, VEGF-B or FGF-2 + VEGF-B. Results: Ligation decreased C<sub>BP</sub>; on day 14, a 48% deficit remained in the RSA group compared with a deficit of only 22% in FGF-2 and VEGF-B groups. On day 3, flow reserve was attenuated 60%, but recovered by day 14 (with no treatment effects). Collateral artery numbers increased with RSA (+28%), FGF-2 (+53%), VEGF-B (+47%) and FGF-2 + VEGF-B (+59%). Rectus femoris muscle total capillary profiles and fibers per cross-section were alike across groups. Tibialis anterior muscle cross-sectional area was lower with ligation and total capillary number was less in RSA and FGF-2 groups, providing evidence for angiogenesis with VEGF-B. Capillary/muscle fiber ratio was similar in each group. Conclusions: FGF-2 and VEGF-B enhanced lower limb perfusion as indicated by improved C<sub>BP</sub> and combined treatment increased collateral artery number. Flow reserve recovery was not enhanced by cytokine treatment. VEGF-B, but not FGF-2, caused angiogenesis in the tibialis anterior muscle. Overall, VEGF-B may have advantages over FGF-2 in this setting; however, their combination may further improve arteriogenesis.

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          Most cited references 28

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          Therapeutic angiogenesis. A single intraarterial bolus of vascular endothelial growth factor augments revascularization in a rabbit ischemic hind limb model.

          Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) is a heparin-binding, endothelial cell-specific mitogen. Previous studies have suggested that VEGF is a regulator of naturally occurring physiologic and pathologic angiogenesis. In this study we investigated the hypothesis that the angiogenic potential of VEGF is sufficient to constitute a therapeutic effect. The soluble 165-amino acid isoform of VEGF was administered as a single intra-arterial bolus to the internal iliac artery of rabbits in which the ipsilateral femoral artery was excised to induce severe, unilateral hind limb ischemia. Doses of 500-1,000 micrograms of VEGF produced statistically significant augmentation of collateral vessel development by angiography as well as the number of capillaries by histology; consequent amelioration of the hemodynamic deficit in the ischemic limb was significantly greater in animals receiving VEGF than in nontreated controls (calf blood pressure ratio, 0.75 +/- 0.14 vs. 0.48 +/- 0.19, P < 0.05). Serial angiograms disclosed progressive linear extension of the collateral artery of origin (stem artery) to the distal point of parent vessel (reentry artery) reconstitution in seven of nine VEGF-treated animals. These findings establish proof of principle for the concept that the angiogenic activity of VEGF is sufficiently potent to achieve therapeutic benefit. Such a strategy might ultimately be applicable to patients with severe limb ischemia secondary to arterial occlusive disease.
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            Monocyte activation in angiogenesis and collateral growth in the rabbit hindlimb.

            We have previously shown that monocytes adhere to the vascular wall during collateral vessel growth (arteriogenesis) and capillary sprouting (angiogenesis). In this study we investigated the association of monocyte accumulation with both the production of the cytokines-basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) and TNF-alpha-and vessel proliferation in the rabbit after femoral artery occlusion. In particular, we studied the effects of an increase in monocyte recruitment by LPS on capillary density as well as collateral and peripheral conductance after 7 d of occlusion. Monocytes accumulated around day 3 in collateral arteries when maximal proliferation was observed, and stained strongly for bFGF and TNF-alpha. In the lower limb where angiogenesis was shown to be predominant, macrophage accumulation was also closely associated with maximal proliferation (around day 7). LPS treatment significantly increased capillary density (424+/-26.1 n/mm2 vs. 312+/-20.7 n/mm2; P < 0.05) and peripheral conductance (109+/-33.8 ml/min/100 mmHg vs. 45+/-6.8 ml/min/100 mmHg; P < 0.05) as compared with untreated animals after 7 d of occlusion. These results indicate that monocyte activation plays a major role in angiogenesis and collateral artery growth.
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              The biology of vascular endothelial growth factors.

              The discovery of the vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) family members VEGF, VEGF-B, placental growth factor (PlGF), VEGF-C and VEGF-D and their receptors VEGFR-1, -2 and -3 has provided tools for studying the vascular system in development as well as in diseases ranging from ischemic heart disease to cancer. VEGF has been established as the prime angiogenic molecule during development, adult physiology and pathology. PlGF may primarily mediate arteriogenesis, the formation of collateral arteries from preexisting arterioles, with potential future therapeutic use in for example occlusive atherosclerotic disease. VEGF-C and VEGF-D are primarily lymphangiogenic factors, but they can also induce angiogenesis in some conditions. While many studies have addressed the role of angiogenesis and the blood vasculature in human physiology, the lymphatic vascular system has until recently attracted very little attention. In this review, we will discuss recent advances in angiogenesis research and provide an overview of the molecular players involved in lymphangiogenesis.

                Author and article information

                J Vasc Res
                Journal of Vascular Research
                S. Karger AG
                December 2008
                16 June 2008
                : 46
                : 1
                : 45-54
                Cardiovascular Therapeutics Unit, Department of Pharmacology, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Vic., Australia
                139132 J Vasc Res 2009;46:45–54
                © 2008 S. Karger AG, Basel

                Copyright: All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be translated into other languages, reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, microcopying, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher. Drug Dosage: The authors and the publisher have exerted every effort to ensure that drug selection and dosage set forth in this text are in accord with current recommendations and practice at the time of publication. However, in view of ongoing research, changes in government regulations, and the constant flow of information relating to drug therapy and drug reactions, the reader is urged to check the package insert for each drug for any changes in indications and dosage and for added warnings and precautions. This is particularly important when the recommended agent is a new and/or infrequently employed drug. Disclaimer: The statements, opinions and data contained in this publication are solely those of the individual authors and contributors and not of the publishers and the editor(s). The appearance of advertisements or/and product references in the publication is not a warranty, endorsement, or approval of the products or services advertised or of their effectiveness, quality or safety. The publisher and the editor(s) disclaim responsibility for any injury to persons or property resulting from any ideas, methods, instructions or products referred to in the content or advertisements.

                Page count
                Figures: 5, Tables: 2, References: 39, Pages: 10
                Research Paper


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