Anti-PlGF inhibits growth of VEGF(R)-inhibitor-resistant tumors without affecting healthy vessels

Christian Fischer, Bart Jonckx, Massimiliano Mazzone, Serena Zacchigna, Sonja Loges, Lucia Pattarini, Emmanuel Chorianopoulos, Laurens Liesenborghs, Marta Koch, Maria De Mol, Monica Autiero, Sabine Wyns, Stephane Plaisance, Lieve Moons, Nico van Rooijen, Mauro Giacca, Jean-Marie Stassen, Mieke Dewerchin, Desire Collen, Peter Carmeliet

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Novel antiangiogenic strategies with complementary mechanisms are needed to maximize efficacy and minimize resistance to current angiogenesis inhibitors. We explored the therapeutic potential and mechanisms of alphaPlGF, an antibody against placental growth factor (PlGF), a VEGF homolog, which regulates the angiogenic switch in disease, but not in health. alphaPlGF inhibited growth and metastasis of various tumors, including those resistant to VEGF(R) inhibitors (VEGF(R)Is), and enhanced the efficacy of chemotherapy and VEGF(R)Is. alphaPlGF inhibited angiogenesis, lymphangiogenesis, and tumor cell motility. Distinct from VEGF(R)Is, alphaPlGF prevented infiltration of angiogenic macrophages and severe tumor hypoxia, and thus, did not switch on the angiogenic rescue program responsible for resistance to VEGF(R)Is. Moreover, it did not cause or enhance VEGF(R)I-related side effects. The efficacy and safety of alphaPlGF, its pleiotropic and complementary mechanism to VEGF(R)Is, and the negligible induction of an angiogenic rescue program suggest that alphaPlGF may constitute a novel approach for cancer treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Issue number3
Pages (from-to)463-75
Number of pages13
Publication statusPublished - 2-Nov-2007


  • Animals
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal/adverse effects
  • Antineoplastic Agents/pharmacology
  • Blood Vessels/drug effects
  • Cell Line
  • Cell Movement/drug effects
  • Drug Resistance, Neoplasm/drug effects
  • Drug Screening Assays, Antitumor
  • Drug-Related Side Effects and Adverse Reactions
  • Health
  • Humans
  • Lymphangiogenesis/drug effects
  • Macrophages/cytology
  • Mice
  • Neoplasm Metastasis
  • Neoplasms/blood supply
  • Neovascularization, Pathologic/drug therapy
  • Placenta Growth Factor
  • Pregnancy Proteins/antagonists & inhibitors
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor Receptor-2/antagonists & inhibitors


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