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Quantitative and qualitative in vivo angiogenesis assay

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We describe the development and optimization of an in vivo angiogenesis assay utilizing gelfoam sponges impregnated with 0.4% agarose and different proangiogenic factors, such as basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF), vascular epidermal growth factor (VEGF), tumor growth factor-alpha (TGF-α), and endothelial growth factor (EGF). The sponges are implanted into the subcutis of mice and harvested after different times. The gelfoam sponges are fixed, sectioned, and stained with fluorescent antibodies against CD31. The median number of CD31+ cells is determined in 10 different 0.159-mm2 fields. Proangiogenic molecules induced significant migration and proliferation of endothelial cells. To demonstrate the utility of this assay for evaluation of an antiangiogenic agent, mice were implanted with gelfoam sponges containing different proangiogenic factors and treated orally with water or PTK 787, a novel tyrosine kinase inhibitor with specific activity against the VEGF-R. PTK 787 significantly inhibited angiogenesis in sponges containing agarose + VEGF but not other proangiogenic molecules. The data show that the implanted gelfoam sponges provide a reliable quantitative assay to study in vivo angiogenesis.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Cancer Biology, The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX 77030, USA

Publication date: January 1, 2002

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  • The International Journal of Oncology provides an international forum for the publication of the latest, cutting-edge research in the broad area of oncology and cancer treatment. The journal accepts original high quality works and reviews on all aspects of oncology research including carcinogenesis, metastasis, epidemiology, chemotherapy and viral oncology. Through fair and efficient peer review, the journal is dedicated to publishing top tier research in the field, offering authors rapid publication as well as high standards of copy-editing and production. The International Journal of Oncology is published on a monthly basis in both print and early online.
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