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Vascular Integrins: Therapeutic and Imaging Targets of Tumor Angiogenesis
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Liersch R., Berdel W.E., Kessler T.
Recent Results in Cancer Research
Cells, including endothelial cells, continuously sense their surrounding environment and rapidly adapt to changes in order to assure tissues and organs homeostasis. The extracellular matrix (ECM) provides a physical scaffold for cell positioning and represents an instructive interface allowing cells to communicate over short distances. Cell surface receptors of the integrin family emerged through evolution as essential mediators and integrators of ECM-dependent communication. In preclinical studies, pharmacological inhibition of vascular integrins suppressed angiogenesis and inhibited tumor progression. alpha(V)beta(3) and alpha(V)beta(5) were the first integrins targeted to suppress tumor angiogenesis. Subsequently, additional integrins, in particular alpha(1)beta(1), alpha(2)beta(1), alpha(5)beta(1), and alpha(6)beta(4), emerged as potential therapeutic targets. Integrin inhibitors are currently tested in clinical trials for their safety and antiangiogenic/antitumor activity. In this chapter, we review the role of integrins in angiogenesis and present recent advances in the use of integrin antagonists as potential therapeutics in cancer and discuss future perspectives.
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