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J Cell Physiol. 1991 Mar;146(3):379-85.

Immunolocalization of basic fibroblast growth factor during chicken cardiac development.

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Department of Biological Sciences, St. John's University, Jamaica, New York 11439.


Basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) has been identified in cultured cardiac myocytes as well as in myocardial tissue of both embryonic and adult organisms; bFGF has also been demonstrated to regulate proliferation and differentiation of these cells in culture. Such studies suggest a possible role for bFGF in cardiac myogenesis. In vitro studies using cultured endothelial and neuronal cells also suggest that myocyte-derived bFGF may be involved in the regulation of vascularization and/or innervation of the developing heart. We have generated a spatial and temporal map for bFGF in the developing chick heart using immunohistochemical techniques and our monospecific polyclonal rabbit antihuman bFGF IgG. A progressive decrease in bFGF expression was seen in the highly trabeculated region of the ventricular myocardium, relative to the myocardium directly underlying the epicardial tissue, with increasing developmental age. bFGF expression was limited to the cytoplasm of cardiac myocytes; neither vascular endothelium nor smooth muscle contained anti-bFGF immunoreactive material. A correlation between the temporal and spatial pattern of bFGF expression seen here, with the pattern of myocyte proliferation and differentiation reported by others, suggests a role for bFGF in the autocrine regulation of myocyte proliferation and differentiation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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