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Rev Physiol Biochem Pharmacol. 2003;149:39-52. Epub 2003 Jun 17.

Oncostatin M, a multifunctional cytokine.

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Institute of Molecular and Cellular Biosciences, University of Tokyo, 1-1-1 Yayoi, Bunkyo-ku, 113-0032 Tokyo, Japan.


Oncostatin M (OSM) is a multifunctional cytokine that belongs to the Interleukin (IL)-6 subfamily. Among the family members, OSM is most closely related to leukemia inhibitory factor (LIF) and it in fact utilizes the LIF receptor in addition to its specific receptor in the human. While OSM was originally recognized by its unique activity to inhibit the proliferation of tumor cells, accumulating evidence now indicates that OSM exhibits many unique biological activities in inflammation, hematopoiesis, and development. Here, we review the profile of OSM activities, receptors, and signal transduction.

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