VEGFs (vascular endothelial growth factors) control vascular development during embryogenesis and the function of blood vessels and lymphatic vessels in the adult. There are five related mammalian ligands, which act through three receptor tyrosine kinases. Signalling is modulated through neuropilins, which act as VEGF co-receptors. Heparan sulfate and integrins are also important modulators of VEGF signalling. Therapeutic agents that interfere with VEGF signalling have been developed with the aim of decreasing angiogenesis in diseases that involve tissue growth and inflammation, such as cancer. The present review will outline the current understanding and consequent biology of VEGF receptor signalling.

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