A Structural Overview of Vascular Endothelial Growth Factors Pharmacological Ligands: From Macromolecules to Designed Peptidomimetics - Université Paris Cité Access content directly
Journal Articles Molecules Year : 2021

A Structural Overview of Vascular Endothelial Growth Factors Pharmacological Ligands: From Macromolecules to Designed Peptidomimetics

Xiaoqing Ye
Michel Vidal
  • Function : Author
Sylvain Broussy

Abstract

The vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) family of cytokines plays a key role in vasculogenesis, angiogenesis, and lymphangiogenesis. VEGF-A is the main member of this family, alongside placental growth factor (PlGF), VEGF-B/C/D in mammals, and VEGF-E/F in other organisms. To study the activities of these growth factors under physiological and pathological conditions, resulting in therapeutic applications in cancer and age-related macular degeneration, blocking ligands have been developed. These have mostly been large biomolecules like antibodies. Ligands with high affinities, at least in the nanomolar range, and accurate structural data from X-ray crystallography and NMR spectroscopy have been described. They constitute the main focus of this overview, which evidences similarities and differences in their binding modes. For VEGF-A ligands, and to a limited extent also for PlGF, a transition is now observed towards developing smaller ligands like nanobodies and peptides. These include unnatural amino acids and chemical modifications for designed and improved properties, such as serum stability and greater affinity. However, this review also highlights the scarcity of such small molecular entities and the striking lack of small organic molecule ligands. It also shows the gap between the rather large array of ligands targeting VEGF-A and the general absence of ligands binding other VEGF members, besides some antibodies. Future developments in these directions are expected in the upcoming years, and the study of these growth factors and their promising therapeutic applications will be welcomed.
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Dates and versions

hal-03818364 , version 1 (17-10-2022)

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Xiaoqing Ye, Jean-François Gaucher, Michel Vidal, Sylvain Broussy. A Structural Overview of Vascular Endothelial Growth Factors Pharmacological Ligands: From Macromolecules to Designed Peptidomimetics. Molecules, 2021, 26 (22), pp.6759. ⟨10.3390/molecules26226759⟩. ⟨hal-03818364⟩
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