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FEBS Lett. 1996 May 27;387(1):78-80.

Prevention of growth arrest-induced cell death of vascular smooth muscle cells by a product of growth arrest-specific gene, gas6.

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  • 1Discovery Research Laboratories II, Shionogi & Co., Ltd., Osaka, Japan.


We have purified Gas6 as a growth-potentiating factor for vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs) [Nakano, T. et al. (1995) J. Biol. Chem. 270, 5702-5705]. However, specific production of Gas6 in growth-arrested cells raises an intriguing question as to the physiological function of Gas6. In this study, we found that serum-starved VSMCs secreted some survival factors and depletion of the factors induced cell death of VSMCs. Finally, we demonstrated that cell death was prevented by the addition of Gas6, suggesting that one of the major biological activities of Gas6 is protection of growth-arrested VSMCs from death.

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