The potential benefits of angiogenesis therapy in treating cardiovascular conditions are obvious in theory, but in practice they are proving challenging to demonstrate. This doesn't mean the theory is wrong, but it may mean that companies have to rethink the end points they pick for clinical trials.

Angiogenesis uses growth factors to stimulate blood vessel formation to circumvent blocked vessels. Among presentations at the American College of Cardiology meeting in Anaheim last week were a Phase II trial from Chiron Corp. that failed to show significant efficacy, and a Phase I/II open-label trial by Vascular Genetics Inc. that showed positive results.