University of Oulu

Kangas, J., Nätynki, M. and Eklund, L. (2018), Development of Molecular Therapies for Venous Malformations. Basic Clin Pharmacol Toxicol, 123: 6-19. doi:10.1111/bcpt.13027

Development of molecular therapies for venous malformations

Saved in:
Author: Kangas, Jaakko1; Nätynki, Marjut2; Eklund, Lauri2
Organizations: 1Life Science Center of Tsukuba Advanced Research Alliance, University of Tsukuba, Tsukuba, Japan
2Oulu Center for Cell‐Matrix Research, Faculty of Biochemistry and Molecular Medicine, Biocenter Oulu University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
Format: article
Version: accepted version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 1 MB)
Persistent link:
Language: English
Published: John Wiley & Sons, 2018
Publish Date: 2019-03-20


Vascular anomalies are localized defects of morphogenesis that can affect lymphatic and blood vessels. They are generally called birthmarks, typically observed soon after birth and occurring in up to 10% of children. Based on their clinical and histological characteristics, they are classified into vascular tumours and vascular malformations. The most common malformations are venous malformations (VMs) resulting in chronic vascular diseases that can be associated with significant morbidity necessitating often demanding and repeating clinical management. The current treatment is based on surgical resection and sclerotherapy, which can be impossible due to the size or location of lesions or ineffective due to the regrowth of malformed vessels. Therefore, medical therapies for VMs are highly desired. Recent studies have identified genetic defects that result in the constantly active endothelial cell receptor tyrosine kinase TIE2/phosphoinositide 3‐kinase PI3K signalling pathway as a frequent cause for VMs. The first treatment to inhibit this pathway with sirolimus indicated that molecular treatment can be effective against VMs. In addition, certain VM ‘hotspot’ mutations have been previously found in tumours, providing the rationale for the exploration and repurposing of existing and investigational cancer drugs for VMs. Finally, discoveries of molecular and cellular abnormalities that characterize a large proportion of VMs and the generation of pre‐clinical VM mouse models provide the necessary basis for the development of the targeted molecular treatment strategies we discuss in this MiniReview.

see all

Series: Basic & clinical pharmacology & toxicology
ISSN: 1742-7835
ISSN-E: 1742-7843
ISSN-L: 1742-7835
Volume: 123
Issue: S5
Pages: 6 - 19
DOI: 10.1111/bcpt.13027
Type of Publication: A2 Review article in a scientific journal
Field of Science: 317 Pharmacy
Dataset Reference: Supporting information:
Copyright information: © 2018 Nordic Association for the Publication of BCPT (former Nordic Pharmacological Society). This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Kangas, J. , Nätynki, M. and Eklund, L. (2018), Development of Molecular Therapies for Venous Malformations. Basic Clin Pharmacol Toxicol, 123: 6-19, which has been published in final form at This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Self-Archiving.