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Angiogenesis, Lymphangiogenesis and Clinical Implications

Beschreibung

Angiogenesis, the formation of new blood vessels, is fundamental for physiological processes such as embryonic and postnatal development, wound repair, and reproductive functions. Angiogenesis plays a major role in tumor growth and in several autoimmune and allergic disorders. Lymphangiogenesis, the formation of new lymphatic vessels, is also important for tumor growth, the formation of metastasis, and chronic inflammatory diseases. Judah Folkman, a pioneer in the study of angiogenesis, first proposed that macrophages and mast cells could be a relevant source of angiogenic factors. Since then, much effort has gone into the elucidation of the role of immune cells in the modulation of angiogenesis and lymphangiogenesis. There is now compelling evidence that several components of the innate and adaptive immune system are implicated in inflammatory and neoplastic angiogenesis and lymphangiogenesis. Articles in this volume deal with the emerging, intriguing possibility that immune cells are both a source and a target of angiogenic and lymphangiogenic factors. Therefore, cells of the immune system might play a role in inflammatory and neoplastic angiogenesis/lymphangiogenesis through the expression of several angiogenic factors and their receptors and co-receptors. The important new findings in this volume will be of special interest to vascular biologists, basic and clinical immunologists, oncologists and to specialists in allergic and immune disorders.