Acute myelogenous leukemia (AML) is an aggressive disorder with an overall disease-free survival of 40-50% even for the younger patients under 60 years of age who can receive the most intensive treatment. The median age at the time of diagnosis is 60-65 years, and the large majority of elderly patients usually receive less intensive chemotherapy or only supportive therapy due to the high treatment-related mortality when using intensive therapy for elderly individuals. Thus, there is a need for new therapeutic approaches to improve the treatment in younger patients and to make AML-directed therapy with acceptable toxicity possible in elderly individuals. Angiogenesis seems to be important both for leukemogenesis and susceptibility to intensive chemotherapy, and antiangiogenic strategies are therefore considered for the treatment of AML. The two proangiogenic mediators vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and interleukin 8, (IL-8, also referred to as CXCL8) seem to be important in human AML: VEGF is released at increased levels due to interactions between AML cells and neighboring nonleukemic cells, whereas IL-8 is released at high levels by native human AML cells. Thus, VEGF as a therapeutic target in AML is suggested both by experimental and clinical observations, whereas IL-8 as a target is mainly suggested by experimental evidence. In the present review we describe and discuss (i) the angioregulatory network of soluble mediators in AML, including both the systemic levels and local release by native human AML cells; and (ii) various therapeutic approaches to target VEGF and IL-8. Although single angioregulatory mediators can be targeted, it should be emphasized that the final effect of soluble mediators on angioregulation is determined by a complex angioregulatory network that varies between AML patients, and the final effect of targeting single mediators may therefore differ between patient subsets.
Keywords: leukemic stem cell subset, vascular endothelial growth factor (vegf), platelet derived growth factor(pdgf), immunoglobulin (Igg), interleukin, angioregulatory profile, basic fibroblast growth factor (bfgf), antiapoptotic, leptin, farnesyltransferase inhibitors (fti)
Rights & PermissionsPrintExport