Pro-angiogenic cytokines as cardiovascular therapeutics - Assessing the potential BIODRUGS Atluri, P., Woo, Y. J. 2008; 22 (4): 209-222


Coronary artery and peripheral vascular disease are global health concerns with limited therapies. Currently available medical and surgical therapies for these disease processes are highly effective for only a fraction of patients. Extensive effort has been devoted to finding molecular therapies to enhance perfusion and function of ischemic myocardial and peripheral skeletal muscle. Angiogenic cytokines (fibroblast growth factor [FGF], vascular endothelial growth factor [VEGF], hepatocyte growth factor [HGF], placental growth factor, stromal cell-derived factor-1alpha) have shown theoretical and experimental promise in upregulating endogenous endothelial progenitor cell-mediated angiogenesis. Preliminary clinical trials have suggested improvements in myocardial and peripheral perfusion following therapy with FGF, VEGF, and HGF. Further studies on the efficacy of cytokine-mediated angiogenesis are required before widespread clinical application is possible. Investigation into adjunctive cytokine therapies for myocardial and peripheral muscle ischemia is warranted. Based on experimental evidence, appropriate angiogenic cytokine therapy should provide benefits in both perfusion and hemodynamic function.

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