Vascular System: The New Frontier in Cancer Research
Vascular System: The New Frontier in Cancer Research
For the last 50 years, cancer treatment has been ruled by the fact that each type of tumor must be selected for specific cancer treatment. Thus, medics have concentrated in producing specific types of drugs for the treatment of certain types of cancer (1). The types of drugs used were specific to candidates affected. Nonetheless, cancer cells have high rate of mutation hence they are very unstable therefore some cells become resistant due to repeated drug use or exposure to chemotherapy. The high rate mutation causes the cells to be genetically unstable thus calling for a new advanced way to treat cancer (2). Moreover, the cancer cells have the ability to turn malignant and thus travel through the blood vessels or lymphatic system and spread through other body organs. Angiogenesis is the formation of blood vessels through the proliferation of cells as a result of tumor development (3). Therefore, researchers have studied the relationship between tumor development and angiogenesis in vascular system so as to find a new of treatment of cancer. The paper intends to discuss the relationship between the vascular system and cancer treatment.
Tumour angiogenesis has been placed has an option for cancer treatment for over 30 years, this has been due to massive research in malignant cancer (3). However, most scientists have not considered it worth for cancer treatment due to lack of serious commitment by a scientist. Moreover, after the discovery that normal cells can be susceptible to chemotherapy, scientists have ventured on other ways of treating cancer like the use of tumour angiogenesis (3, 4). Therefore, scientists have researched on a new type of drugs known as Angiogenesis Inhibitors (AI) which have proved to be effective in cancer treatment through the vascular than chemotherapy and traditional cancer drugs. The AI drugs are made in such way that they prevent nutrients from moving to the tumour cells thus preventing the development of new blood cells (4). The Angiogenesis Inhibition drug’s effectiveness is due to their ability to cut nutrient and oxygen supply from the active tumour cells and preventing their growth. Research on angiogenesis and tumour growth on the treatment of cancer has proved to be realistic and effective.
There are three classes of vascular system Angiogenesis inhibitors, the classes are the ones that block the rapid growth of blood vessels, the one's that block cell signalling and the third group are the ones that interfere with signalling between tumour cells. There are another special group of drugs know as the Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor (VEGF) (5). The VGEF factor has proved to be more effective in cancer treatment since they mostly target endothelial lining. Examples of drugs that are effective in blocking endothelial lining include serpin, endostatin, angiostatin, and antithrombin. Additionally, Lenalidomide is an important example of a drug that affects signalling between tumour cells. Sunitinib is a good example of a drug that blocks signalling in tumour cells.
Under normal conditions blood vessels are formed due to signals created by generated by growing or healing tissue. This can happen either during foetus growth or during female reproductive cycle (6,7). There are specific kinds of protein that are known to activate growth. The common ones are 15 in number; VEGF is one important protein factor among the 15 factors that activates growth (8). Fibroblast Growth Factor, Placental Growth Factor, Tumour Necrosis Factor, Epidermal Growth factor, angiogenin and platelet Derived Growth are other important growth factors in angiogenesis (9, 10).
Cancerous cells are known to produce their own protein factor; most tumour cells are known to produce VEGF. VEGF is the main protein factor that signals the growth and proliferation of the new blood vessels (11, 12). Research has shown that the endothelial cells are the main cells that contribute to the growth of the new blood vessel thus they are the main cells targeted by the drugs (12). The Angiogenesis Inhibitors can be used to either to break the endothelial cells, inhibit the cells growth, block endothelial chemical signals or block endothelial protein action. However, the main action of the AI is to work on the VECF and cancel their effect on the endothelial walls, thus, this can be used to prevent the growth of cancerous cells (13). Angiogenesis Initiators can, therefore, be used effectively to prevent the spread of malignant cancer to other areas of the body.
In vascular system cancer management, Angiogenesis inhibitors have proved to be effective in cancer treatment. Moreover, a combination of chemotherapy and angiogenesis has shown great success in cancer management. Therefore, researchers should concentrate on making angiogenesis more effective and hence improve cancer management in the health sector. However, the angiogenesis inhibitor drugs have side effects that might make them not proper for cancer treatment. With further research, the side effect can be managed and efficacy can be achieved in cancer management. A scientist should thus focus on understanding the process of angiogenesis and chemotherapy so as to come with better drugs and effective ways of managing cancer. Understanding of the components of the vascular system and how they operate in relation to tumour growth will enable management of cancer to be more effective.
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