Solid tumor growth requires the formation of new blood vessels to supply nutrients and oxygen to the malignant cells; one approach to cancer therapy is to block this process by inhibiting VEGF signaling. In this issue of the JCI, Pasula et al. demonstrate a surprising role of epsins — proteins involved in endocytosis — in tumor angiogenesis via their modulation of VEGF signaling. Their findings suggest that these proteins might represent a new target for the development of cancer therapeutics.
Epsins mediate VEGFR2 ubiquitination and endocytosis.