Angiogenesis in prostate cancer: onset, progression and imaging
What's known on the subject? and What does the study add? Today, angiogenesis is known to play a key role in cancer growth and development. Emerging cancer treatments are based on the suppression of angiogenesis, and modern imaging techniques investigate changes in the microvasculature that are caused by angiogenesis. As for other forms of cancers, angiogenesis is well recognised as a fundamental process in the development of prostate cancer. The novelty of this extensive report on angiogenesis in cancer, with particular attention on prostate cancer and the imaging techniques able to detect it, is the new prospective to the subject. In contrast with the other available reviews, this report goes from ‘theory’ to ‘practice’, establishing a clear link between angiogenesis development and imaged angiogenesis features. Once the key role of angiogenesis in the development of cancer and in particular prostate cancer has been fully described, attention is turned to the current imaging methods with the potential to assess the angiogenesis process and, as a consequence, to detect and localise prostate cancer. • As confirmed by all available statistics, cancer represents a major clinical and societal problem in the developed world. The form of cancer with the highest incidence in men is prostate cancer. For prostate cancer, as well as for most forms of cancer, detection of the disease at an early stage is critical to reduce mortality and morbidity. Today, it is well known that pathological angiogenesis represents a crucial step in cancer development and progression. Comparable with most forms of cancer, angiogenesis also plays a fundamental role for prostate cancer growth. As a consequence, angiogenesis is an ideal target not only for novel anti-angiogenic therapies, but also for modern imaging techniques that aim at cancer localisation by detection of angiogenic microvascular changes. These techniques are mainly based on magnetic resonance, ultrasound, and nuclear imaging. This paper provides a comprehensive review of the available studies on angiogenesis in prostate cancer and its use by modern and emerging imaging techniques for prostate cancer localisation.