Expression and localization of vascular endothelial growth factor and its receptor flt in pulmonary sarcoidosis
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- Tolnay, E., Kuhnen, C., Voss, B. et al. Virchows Archiv (1998) 432: 61. doi:10.1007/s004280050135
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Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) is a multifunctional cytokine, which has recently been reported to enhance the activation and migration of monocytes through the flt receptor in vitro, which are key events in granuloma formation of granulomatous disorders and in sarcoidosis. Since activated macrophages and monocytes are known to be involved in sarcoid granuloma formation in sarcoidosis, we investigated the expression of VEGF and its receptor flt in 33 paraffin-embedded lung tissue biopsies of patients with pulmonary sarcoidosis. VEGF-mRNA was localized by nonradioactive in situ hybridization, VEGF and flt expression were visualized immunohistochemically. We found an increased transcription and protein production of VEGF and an overexpression of flt in activated alveolar macrophages, in epitheloid cells, and in multinuclear giant cells of pulmonary sarcoid granulomas.