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Int J Biochem Cell Biol. 2000 Mar;32(3):263-7.

Fibroblast growth factor-2.

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  • 1Institut Curie, UMR 144/CNRS, Laboratory of Morphogenesis and Tumor Progression, Paris, France.


Fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF-2) is a heparin-binding growth factor which occurs in several isoforms resulting from alternative initiations of translation: an 18 kD cytoplasmic isoform and four larger molecular weight nuclear isoforms (22, 22.5, 24 and 34 kD). FGF-2 has pleiotropic roles in many cell types and tissues; it is a motogenic, angiogenic and survival factor which is involved in cell migration, cell differentiation and in a variety of developmental processes. Although devoid of signal peptide, it could be secreted. It acts mainly through a paracrine/autocrine mechanism involving high affinity transmembrane receptors and heparan sulfate proteoglycan low affinity receptors, but also through still unknown intracrine process(es) on intracellular targets. FGF-2 has many biological functions which are probably isoform-specific. Nevertheless, FGF-2 is not essential for embryonic development as knock-out mice for the growth factor are viable and fertile although they exhibit abnormalities in neuronal differentiation. Use of FGF-2 as therapeutic agent for the treatment of ischemic cardiovascular disease is promising and clinical trials are in progress.

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