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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. Jun 20, 1995; 92(13): 5865–5869.

A role for ciliary neurotrophic factor as an inducer of reactive gliosis, the glial response to central nervous system injury.


Within the central nervous system (CNS) ciliary neurotrophic factor (CNTF) is expressed by astrocytes where it remains stored as an intracellular protein; its release and function as an extracellular ligand are thought to occur in the event of cellular injury. We find that overexpression of CNTF in transgenic mice recapitulates the glial response to CNS lesion, as does its injection into the uninjured brain. These results demonstrate that CNTF functions as an inducer of reactive gliosis, a condition associated with a number of neurological diseases of the CNS.

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