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      Anti-angiogenic therapy for cancer: current progress, unresolved questions and future directions

      ,

      Angiogenesis

      Springer Netherlands

      VEGF, Angiogenesis, Metastasis, Resistance, Microenvironment, Personalised medicine

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          Abstract

          Tumours require a vascular supply to grow and can achieve this via the expression of pro-angiogenic growth factors, including members of the vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) family of ligands. Since one or more of the VEGF ligand family is overexpressed in most solid cancers, there was great optimism that inhibition of the VEGF pathway would represent an effective anti-angiogenic therapy for most tumour types. Encouragingly, VEGF pathway targeted drugs such as bevacizumab, sunitinib and aflibercept have shown activity in certain settings. However, inhibition of VEGF signalling is not effective in all cancers, prompting the need to further understand how the vasculature can be effectively targeted in tumours. Here we present a succinct review of the progress with VEGF-targeted therapy and the unresolved questions that exist in the field: including its use in different disease stages (metastatic, adjuvant, neoadjuvant), interactions with chemotherapy, duration and scheduling of therapy, potential predictive biomarkers and proposed mechanisms of resistance, including paradoxical effects such as enhanced tumour aggressiveness. In terms of future directions, we discuss the need to delineate further the complexities of tumour vascularisation if we are to develop more effective and personalised anti-angiogenic therapies.

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          Most cited references 243

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              Bevacizumab, a monoclonal antibody against vascular endothelial growth factor, has shown promising preclinical and clinical activity against metastatic colorectal cancer, particularly in combination with chemotherapy. Of 813 patients with previously untreated metastatic colorectal cancer, we randomly assigned 402 to receive irinotecan, bolus fluorouracil, and leucovorin (IFL) plus bevacizumab (5 mg per kilogram of body weight every two weeks) and 411 to receive IFL plus placebo. The primary end point was overall survival. Secondary end points were progression-free survival, the response rate, the duration of the response, safety, and the quality of life. The median duration of survival was 20.3 months in the group given IFL plus bevacizumab, as compared with 15.6 months in the group given IFL plus placebo, corresponding to a hazard ratio for death of 0.66 (P<0.001). The median duration of progression-free survival was 10.6 months in the group given IFL plus bevacizumab, as compared with 6.2 months in the group given IFL plus placebo (hazard ratio for disease progression, 0.54; P<0.001); the corresponding rates of response were 44.8 percent and 34.8 percent (P=0.004). The median duration of the response was 10.4 months in the group given IFL plus bevacizumab, as compared with 7.1 months in the group given IFL plus placebo (hazard ratio for progression, 0.62; P=0.001). Grade 3 hypertension was more common during treatment with IFL plus bevacizumab than with IFL plus placebo (11.0 percent vs. 2.3 percent) but was easily managed. The addition of bevacizumab to fluorouracil-based combination chemotherapy results in statistically significant and clinically meaningful improvement in survival among patients with metastatic colorectal cancer. Copyright 2004 Massachusetts Medical Society
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                Author and article information

                Contributors
                +44-207-1535235 , +44-207-1535340 , andrew.reynolds@icr.ac.uk
                Journal
                Angiogenesis
                Angiogenesis
                Angiogenesis
                Springer Netherlands (Dordrecht )
                0969-6970
                1573-7209
                31 January 2014
                31 January 2014
                2014
                : 17
                : 471-494
                Affiliations
                [ ]Tumour Biology Team, Breakthrough Breast Cancer Research Centre, The Institute of Cancer Research, Fulham Road, London, SW3 6JB UK
                [ ]Cancer Research UK Centre, Leeds Institute of Cancer and Pathology, St James’s University Hospital, Beckett Street, Leeds, LS9 7TF UK
                Article
                9420
                10.1007/s10456-014-9420-y
                4061466
                24482243
                © The Author(s) 2014

                Open AccessThis article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits any use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author(s) and the source are credited.

                Categories
                Review Paper
                Custom metadata
                © Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

                Human biology

                vegf, personalised medicine, microenvironment, resistance, metastasis, angiogenesis

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