Intussusceptible Angiogenesis

Author(s): Jennifer Stewart*

Angiogenesis is the physiological process through which new blood vessels develop from pre-existing vessels that were produced earlier in the vasculogenesis process. Angiogenesis is the process of the vasculature sprouting and splitting to continue its expansion. Although arguments are not always clear, vasculogenesis is the embryonic development of endothelial cells from mesoderm cell progenitors and neovascularization (especially in older texts). Vasculogenesis is responsible for the formation of the first vessels in the developing embryo, while angiogenesis is responsible for the majority, if not all, blood vessel growth during development and disease.

Angiogenesis is a normal and important process that occurs during growth, development, wound healing, and the production of granulation tissue. It is, nevertheless, a crucial phase in the progression of tumours from benign to malignant, which leads to the use of angiogenesis inhibitors in cancer treatment. Judah Folkman first hypothesised the importance of angiogenesis in tumour growth in 1971, describing tumours as “hot and bloody” demonstrating that, at least for many tumour forms, flush perfusion and even hyperemia are common.