The neurovascular link: an unexpectedly important role of metabolism.
This Methusalem project will focus on unraveling the molecular and cellular basis of the formation of blood vessels (angiogenesis) in health and disease, and in particular the role of vascular metabolism and vascular heterogeneity herein, with the ultimate goal to identify novel therapeutic pro- or anti-angiogenic strategies.
Current anti-angiogenesis therapies (AATs), by targeting the pro-angiogenic factor VEGF, suffer resistance and insufficient efficacy. We will explore opportunities to overcome these limitations and to improve AAT by focusing on endothelial cell metabolism, endothelial heterogeneity and, in particular, endothelial immunity. Recent findings, by combining single-cell transcriptomics with bulk multi-omics (transcriptomics, (epi)-genomics, proteomics & metabolomics) revealed novel insights in endothelial cell metabolism and heterogeneity in health and disease that can help to develop novel AAT strategies