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Science. 1990 Feb 16;247(4944):836-8.

Activin-binding protein from rat ovary is follistatin.

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Frontier Research Program, Institute of Physical and Chemical Research (RIKEN), Saitama, Japan.


Activin, a member of the transforming growth factor beta protein family, was originally isolated from gonadal fluids and stimulates the release of pituitary follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH). Activin has numerous functions in both normal and neoplastic cells. Various cells synthesize activin and have a specific binding site for this peptide. However, the molecular basis for its actions is unknown. A binding protein for activin was purified from rat ovary and was identical to follistatin, a specific inhibitor of FSH release. It is likely that the binding protein participates in the diverse regulatory actions of activin.

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