Growth Factor

Growth Factor

Transforming Growth Factor (TGF) is a group of proteins that play essential roles in cell growth, differentiation, and development in multicellular organisms. There are several types of TGF, with TGF-β being the most well-known and extensively studied.

Transforming growth factor-β- (TGF-β-) induced EndoMT


There are different isoforms of TGF, including TGF-β1, TGF-β2, and TGF-β3, each encoded by a separate gene. These isoforms share structural similarities and exert overlapping but also distinct biological functions.

Biological Functions:

TGF plays crucial roles in various biological processes, including embryonic development, tissue homeostasis, wound healing, immune regulation, and tumor suppression. It regulates cell proliferation, differentiation, migration, apoptosis, and extracellular matrix production.

Signaling Pathway:

TGF signals through a cell surface receptor complex composed of type I and type II serine/threonine kinase receptors. Upon ligand binding, the receptors activate downstream intracellular signaling cascades, including the canonical Smad pathway and non-Smad pathways such as MAPK and PI3K-AKT.


The activity of TGF is tightly regulated at multiple levels to ensure proper cellular responses. Regulation occurs through various mechanisms, including transcriptional control, post-translational modifications, extracellular binding proteins, and feedback loops.

Dysregulation and Disease:

Dysregulation of TGF signaling is implicated in numerous diseases, including cancer, fibrosis, autoimmune disorders, and developmental defects. In cancer, TGF can exhibit both tumor-suppressive and tumor-promoting effects depending on the cellular context and stage of tumor progression.

Therapeutic Target:

Due to its involvement in various diseases, targeting the TGF signaling pathway has emerged as a promising therapeutic strategy. Approaches include the development of small molecule inhibitors, antibodies targeting TGF ligands or receptors, and modulation of downstream signaling components.


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