Vascularization of melanoma by mobilization and remodeling of preexisting latent vessels to patency

Weixin Lu, Alan Jay Schroit

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Tumors must manipulate the host vasculature to provide a blood supply adequate for their proliferation. Although tumors may arise as avascular masses, there is increasing evidence that some tumors begin to proliferate by first coopting preexisting host blood vessels. By fluorescent vascular imaging, we provide evidence that the vasculature in orthotopically implanted melanoma arises from a preexisting red cell-deficient vascular network that remodels to patency to accommodate the requirements of the expanding tumor mass. Topical application of vascular endothelial growth factor to vascular beds generated immediate and robust vascular transitions that were morphologically similar to tumor-induced transitions. Nφ-nitro-L-arginine, a nitric oxide inhibitor, significantly inhibited the growth of a syngeneic K1735M2 melanoma by reducing blood supply to the tumor by a mechanism independent of endothelial cell proliferation. These findings suggest that tumor-induced remodeling of red cell-deficient vessels to patency contributes to tumor vascularization and growth.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)913-918
Number of pages6
JournalCancer research
Issue number3
StatePublished - Feb 1 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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