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Crit Rev Clin Lab Sci. 2008;45(1):91-135. doi: 10.1080/10408360701713120 .

FGF-1: from biology through engineering to potential medical applications.

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Faculty of Biotechnology, University of Wroclaw, Wroclaw, Poland.


Human fibroblast growth factor 1 (FGF-1) is one of the best characterized members of the FGF superfamily. FGF-1 is a powerful mitogen exhibiting strong action on numerous different cell types. It plays a role in various stages of development and morphogenesis, as well as in angiogenesis and wound healing processes. Engineering of FGFs can bring many advantages. Design and construction of different mutants can contribute to a better understanding of the mechanism of action of protein growth factors. Moreover, application of FGFs as recombinant polypeptides in the treatment of wound and fracture healing, cardiovascular diseases and neurodegenerative diseases seems to be a rational medical approach. However, low thermal stability and high sensitivity to proteases limit the potential pharmaceutical use of wild-type FGFs. Thus, advanced protein design techniques and recombinant protein production can help to obtain new variants of FGFs with radically increased thermodynamic stability, prolonged half-life and improved proteolytic resistance. Such studies can provide a good starting point to convert short-lived and/or sensitive growth factors to effective therapeutic proteins.

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