The role of connective tissue growth factor, a multifunctional matricellular protein, in fibroblast biology

Andrew Leask, David J Abraham
Biochemistry and Cell Biology 2003, 81 (6): 355-63
Connective tissue growth factor (CTGF, CCN2), a member of the CCN family of proteins, is a cysteine-rich proadhesive matricellular protein that plays an essential role in the formation of blood vessels, bone, and connective tissue. As expression of this protein is potently induced by transforming growth factor-beta (TGFbeta), it has been hypothesized that CTGF mediates several of the downstream actions of TGFbeta. In particular, CTGF is profibrotic, as CTGF is overexpressed in fibrotic disease and synergizes with TGFbeta to promote sustained fibrosis in vivo. Over the last several years, key data regarding the developmental role and structure and function relationship of CTGF have emerged. In addition, increased information concerning the mechanisms underlying the control of CTGF expression in normal and fibrotic cells and the signal transduction pathways through which CTGF acts on cells has been uncovered. This review summarizes the current state of knowledge regarding CTGF biology.

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