Theranostics 2012; 2(6):541-552. doi:10.7150/thno.3682


Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor-Delivery Systems for Cardiac Repair: An Overview

Teresa Simón-Yarza1, Fabio R. Formiga1, Esther Tamayo1, Beatriz Pelacho2, Felipe Prosper2✉, María J. Blanco-Prieto1✉

1. Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Technology Department, School of Pharmacy, University of Navarra, Pamplona, Spain;
2. Hematology Service and Area of Cell Therapy, Clínica Universidad de Navarra, Foundation for Applied Medical Research, University of Navarra, Pamplona, Spain.


Since the discovery of the Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor (VEGF) and its leading role in the angiogenic process, this has been seen as a promising molecule for promoting neovascularization in the infarcted heart. However, even though several clinical trials were initiated, no therapeutic effects were observed, due in part to the short half life of this factor when administered directly to the tissue. In this context, drug delivery systems appear to offer a promising strategy to overcome limitations in clinical trials of VEGF.

The aim of this paper is to review the principal drug delivery systems that have been developed to administer VEGF in cardiovascular disease. Studies published in the last 5 years are reviewed and the main features of these systems are explained. The tissue engineering concept is introduced as a therapeutic alternative that holds promise for the near future.

Keywords: VEGF, protein delivery, cardiovascular disease, angiogenesis, tissue engineering.

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How to cite this article:
Simón-Yarza T, Formiga FR, Tamayo E, Pelacho B, Prosper F, Blanco-Prieto MJ. Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor-Delivery Systems for Cardiac Repair: An Overview. Theranostics 2012; 2(6):541-552. doi:10.7150/thno.3682. Available from