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Cytokine Growth Factor Rev. 1996 Dec;7(4):327-39.

Signal transduction by members of the transforming growth factor-beta superfamily.

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  • 1Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, University of Toronto, Ontario, Canada.


Transforming growth factor-beta (TGF beta) superfamily members exert their diverse biological effects through their interaction with heteromeric receptor complexes of transmembrane serine/threonine kinases. Both components of the receptor complex, known as receptor I and receptor II are essential for signal transduction. The composition of these complexes can vary significantly due to the promiscuous nature of the ligands and the receptors, and this diversity of interactions can yield a variety of biological responses. Several receptor interacting proteins and potential mediators of signal transduction have now been identified. Recent advances, particularly in our understanding of the function of Mothers against dpp-related (MADR) proteins, are providing new insights into how the TGF beta superfamily signals its diverse biological activities.

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