Development of therapies based on the growth inhibition of new blood vessels is among the most intensively studied approaches to the treatment of cancer and other angiogenesis-related diseases. Shark cartilage has been proven to have inhibitory effects on the endothelial cell angiogenesis, metastasis, cell adhesion and MMP (matrix metalloprotease) activity. In the present study, we have used a chromatography-based procedure for the isolation and partial purification of a shark cartilage protein fraction containing anti-angiogenesis activity. Proteins were extracted in 4 M guanidinium chloride, followed by sequential anion- and cation-exchange column chromatography. Angiogenesis assays were performed using the rat aortic ring and chick CAM (chorioallantoic membrane) assay models. The results show that the final fraction contains two proteins with molecular masses of 14.7 and 16 kDa. The protein fraction is able to block microvessel sprouting in the collagen-embedded rat aortic ring assay in vitro and inhibition of capillary sprouting in the CAM assay in vivo. It is suggested that these are partially purified anti-angiogenesis proteins, which have further biotechnological or biomedical applications.

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