, Volume 8, Issue 3, pp 263-271

Angiogenesis during exercise and training

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In this review the factors involved in angiogenesis are discussed in their various roles in initiating angiogenesis and inducing changes in the extracellular matrix to facilitate sprouting angiogenesis which is a major part of the angiogenesis seen in exercise and exercise training. A key role in angiogenesis is played by vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF). The regulation of blood vessel growth to match the needs of the tissue depends on the control of VEGF production through changes in the stability of its mRNA and in its rate of transcription. The detailed studies describing its characteristics and its upregulation in acute exercise are presented along with a brief overview of the changes in the extracellular matrix that facilitate sprouting angiogenesis that occurs in response to exercise and training. Although the mechanisms involved in the growth and remodeling of arterioles and larger vessels are less detailed some recent studies have provided new insights. These are presented here to show a relationship between capillary development and arteriolar growth or remodeling in exercise training that raises questions to be addressed in future studies.

Correspondence to: Colin M. Bloor, MD, Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Pathology, La Jolla, California 92037, USA. Tel: +858-459-7665; Fax: +858-459-7348; E-mail: cbloor@ucsd.edu