Thrombospondins (TSPs) include a multimeric family of secreted glycoproteins broadly expressed by several cells and tissues. They have been shown to support cell attachment through interactions with multiple cell-adhesion receptors, bind to other extracellular matrix proteins, and regulate cell shape, adhesion and migration. At the tissue level, TSPs have been implicated in the regulation of several complex processes, including angiogenesis and wound healing. More recently, some TSPs have been associated with genetic predisposition for myocardial infarction and vascular disease through genome-wide scans and SNP studies. In this chapter, we summarize the current information on the biology of TSPs, focusing more directly on the angioregulatory roles of TSP1 and-2. We will further discuss the most recent genetic and biochemical advances and their therapeutic exploration.
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