VEGF-targeted cancer therapy strategies: current progress, hurdles and future prospects.
Despite setbacks, the clinical development of antiangiogenic agents has accelerated remarkably over the past 3-4 years. Consequently, there are currently three direct inhibitors of the VEGF pathway approved for use in cancer therapy. Other agents that block the VEGF pathway are in advanced stages of clinical development and have shown promising results. With these exciting developments come crucial questions regarding the use of these new molecular-targeted agents, alone or in combination with standard cytotoxic or targeted agents. Importantly, the mechanisms of action of anti-VEGF therapy remain unknown. Here, we discuss several potential mechanisms of action such as tumor vascular normalization, bone marrow-derived cell recruitment blockade and cytostatic effects of anti-VEGF therapy. We review the current progress, the major stumbling blocks and the future directions for anti-cancer therapy using anti-VEGF agents, emphasizing clarification of the underlying molecular mechanisms of action and biomarker identification and validation.
Duda, DG; Batchelor, TT; Willett, CG; Jain, RK
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