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Nat Rev Mol Cell Biol. 2003 Sep;4(9):721-32.

Trefoil factors: initiators of mucosal healing.

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  • 1The Canberra Hospital, Canberra, Australian Capital Territory, Australia.

Erratum in

  • Nat Rev Mol Cell Biol. 2003 Oct;4(10):819.


Maintaining the integrity of the gastrointestinal tract, despite the continual presence of microbial flora and injurious agents, is essential. Epithelial continuity depends on a family of small, yet abundant, secreted proteins--the trefoil factors (TFFs). TFFs protect mucous epithelia from a range of insults and contribute to mucosal repair, although the signalling events that mediate these responses are only partially understood.

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