Basic Fibroblast Growth Factor - Function

Function

In normal tissue, basic fibroblast growth factor is present in basement membranes and in the subendothelial extracellular matrix of blood vessels. It stays membrane-bound as long as there is no signal peptide.

It has been hypothesized that, during both wound healing of normal tissues and tumor development, the action of heparan sulfate-degrading enzymes activates bFGF, thus mediating the formation of new blood vessels, a process known as angiogenesis.

In addition, it is synthesized and secreted by human adipocytes and the concentration of bFGF correlates with the BMI in blood samples. In this study, bFGF was also shown to act on preosteoblasts - in the form of an increased proliferation - after binding to fibroblast growth factor receptor 1 and activating phosphoinositide 3-kinase.

bFGF has been shown in preliminary animal studies to protect the heart from injury associated with a heart attack, reducing tissue death and promoting improved function after reperfusion.

Recent evidence has shown that low levels of FGF2 play a key role in the incidence of excessive anxiety.

Additionally, bFGF is a critical component of human embryonic stem cell culture medium; the growth factor is necessary for the cells to remain in an undifferentiated state, although the mechanisms by which it does this are poorly defined. It has been demonstrated to induce gremlin expression which in turn is known to inhibit the induction of differentiation by bone morphogenetic proteins. It is necessary in mouse-feeder cell dependent culture systems, as well as in feeder and serum-free culture systems.

Read more about this topic:  Basic Fibroblast Growth Factor

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