Angiogenesis, the development of new blood vessels by sprouting occurs in the adult mainly during wound healing, but is also observed in tumours and ophthalmic or rheumatic diseases. The recruitment of new capillaries by solid tumours is important for the malignant process since the expansion of the selective absolutely depends on this process and the density of the vessels determines the metastasis potential. We propose here to investigate the signals by which four key proteins of endothelial cells, the cells forming the inner layer of blood vessels, control the proliferation, migration and capillary formation. Essential signalling mechanisms triggered by these proteins will be defined at the molecular level and potential target molecules for inhibition of angiogenesis identified. Making use of the recent developments of gene therapy vectors and liposome's, potential inhibitors of these proteins will be evaluated in selective angiogenesis models.
Funding SchemeCSC - Cost-sharing contracts