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Deciphering the roles of macrophages in developmental and inflammation stimulated lymphangiogenesis

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Author(s): Harvey Natasha L | Gordon Emma J

Journal: Vascular Cell
ISSN 2045-824X

Volume: 4;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 15;
Date: 2012;
Original page

Keywords: Lymphangiogenesis | Macrophages | Monocytes | Development | Inflammation | VEGF-C | VEGF-D

ABSTRACT
Abstract Lymphatic vessels share an intimate relationship with hematopoietic cells that commences during embryogenesis and continues throughout life. Lymphatic vessels provide a key conduit for immune cell trafficking during immune surveillance and immune responses and in turn, signals produced by immune lineage cells in settings of inflammation regulate lymphatic vessel growth and activity. In the majority of cases, the recruitment and activation of immune cells during inflammation promotes the growth and development of lymphatic vessels (lymphangiogenesis) and enhances lymph flow, effects that amplify cell trafficking to local lymph nodes and facilitate the mounting of effective immune responses. Macrophages comprise a major, heterogeneous lineage of immune cells that, in addition to key roles in innate and adaptive immunity, perform diverse tasks important for tissue development, homeostasis and repair. Here, we highlight the emerging roles of macrophages in lymphangiogenesis, both during development and in settings of pathology. While much attention has focused on the production of pro-lymphangiogenic stimuli including VEGF-C and VEGF-D by macrophages in models of inflammation including cancer, there is ample evidence to suggest that macrophages provide additional signals important for the regulation of lymphatic vascular growth, morphogenesis and function.
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