Novel antiangiogenic therapies for renal cell cancer.
Renal cell cancer remains a disease for which highly effective therapy for the majority of patients with metastatic disease is lacking. The biology of clear cell carcinomas and their association with mutations of the von Hippel-Lindau gene and its resultant increased expression of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) make angiogenesis a potentially pathophysiologic mechanism for tumor development. As a result, the use of antiangiogenic therapy is an intriguing concept for the treatment of renal cell cancer. Various agents, aside from the inhibitors of VEGF, have been studied, including thalidomide, low-dose interferon, and novel antiangiogenic agents such as the thrombospondin-1 mimetics. Use of these agents has been associated with some degree of objective response or prolonged stabilization of disease, and their true value needs to be assessed in ongoing prospective studies. Combinations of antiangiogenic agents either with other similarly acting drugs or as a component of a "cocktail" with other noncytotoxic therapies should be explored in this patient population.
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