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Cancers 2018, 10(8), 268;

The Methylation Status of the Epigenome: Its Emerging Role in the Regulation of Tumor Angiogenesis and Tumor Growth, and Potential for Drug Targeting

INSERM U1060, 165 Ch. du Grand Revoyet-BP12, 69921 Oullins, France
Department of Molecular Biophysics, Faculty of Biology and Environmental Protection, University of Lodz, 90-236 Lodz, Poland
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 7 June 2018 / Revised: 27 July 2018 / Accepted: 6 August 2018 / Published: 10 August 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Tumor Angiogenesis: An Update)
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Approximately 50 years ago, Judah Folkman raised the concept of inhibiting tumor angiogenesis for treating solid tumors. The development of anti-angiogenic drugs would decrease or even arrest tumor growth by restricting the delivery of oxygen and nutrient supplies, while at the same time display minimal toxic side effects to healthy tissues. Bevacizumab (Avastin)—a humanized monoclonal anti VEGF-A antibody—is now used as anti-angiogenic drug in several forms of cancers, yet with variable results. Recent years brought significant progresses in our understanding of the role of chromatin remodeling and epigenetic mechanisms in the regulation of angiogenesis and tumorigenesis. Many inhibitors of DNA methylation as well as of histone methylation, have been successfully tested in preclinical studies and some are currently undergoing evaluation in phase I, II or III clinical trials, either as cytostatic molecules—reducing the proliferation of cancerous cells—or as tumor angiogenesis inhibitors. In this review, we will focus on the methylation status of the vascular epigenome, based on the genomic DNA methylation patterns with DNA methylation being mainly transcriptionally repressive, and lysine/arginine histone post-translational modifications which either promote or repress the chromatin transcriptional state. Finally, we discuss the potential use of “epidrugs” in efficient control of tumor growth and tumor angiogenesis. View Full-Text
Keywords: DNA methylation; histone methylation; tumor angiogenesis; metastasis DNA methylation; histone methylation; tumor angiogenesis; metastasis

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Pirola, L.; Ciesielski, O.; Balcerczyk, A. The Methylation Status of the Epigenome: Its Emerging Role in the Regulation of Tumor Angiogenesis and Tumor Growth, and Potential for Drug Targeting. Cancers 2018, 10, 268.

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