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Respir Res. 2003;4:2. Epub 2003 Mar 14.

Signaling and regulation of G protein-coupled receptors in airway smooth muscle.

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Department of Medicine, Division of Critical Care, Pulmonary, Allergic & Immunologic Diseases, Kimmel Cancer Center, Jefferson Medical College, Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, PA 19107, USA.


Signaling through G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) mediates numerous airway smooth muscle (ASM) functions including contraction, growth, and "synthetic" functions that orchestrate airway inflammation and promote remodeling of airway architecture. In this review we provide a comprehensive overview of the GPCRs that have been identified in ASM cells, and discuss the extent to which signaling via these GPCRs has been characterized and linked to distinct ASM functions. In addition, we examine the role of GPCR signaling and its regulation in asthma and asthma treatment, and suggest an integrative model whereby an imbalance of GPCR-derived signals in ASM cells contributes to the asthmatic state.

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