Cardiovascular Research vol:65 issue:3 pages:629-38
Despite the tremendous progress achieved in both vasculogenesis and angiogenesis in the last decade, little is still known about the molecular mechanisms underlying the pathfinding of blood vessels during their formation. However, emerging evidence shows that different axonal guidance cues, including members of the Slit and semaphorin families, are also involved in the blood vessel guidance, suggesting that blood vessels and nerves share common mechanisms in choosing and following specific paths to reach their respective targets. These promising findings open novel avenues not only in vascular biology but also in therapeutic angiogenesis. Indeed, the identification of new molecules involved in the guidance of blood vessels may be helpful in designing angiogenic strategies, which would insure both the formation of new blood vessels and their guidance into an organized and coordinated network.