Growth factors and their receptors play important roles in the regulation of cell division, development and differentiation. Growth factor receptors include wnt receptor, tie, neurotrophin receptor, ephrin receptor, insulin-like growth factor receptor (IGF receptor), epidermal growth factor receptor (EGF receptor), fibroblast growth factor receptor (FGF receptor), platelet-derived growth factor receptor (PDGF receptor) and vascular endothelial growth factor receptor (VEGF receptor), etc.
Growth factor receptors are transmembrane proteins which bind to specific growth factors and transmit the instructions conveyed by the factors to intracellular space. The growth factor receptors on cell surface are very common, and cells mainly contains receptors for several growth factors. Most growth factor receptors have a cysteine-rich region, which participate in signal transduction by receptor tyrosine kinase, e.g., the receptors for fibroblast growth factor ( FGF), vascular endothelial growth factor(VEGF), epidermal growth factor (EGF), insulin-like growth factor (IGF), and platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF), etc. Meanwhile, there are some receptors which mediate the signal transduction via receptor serine-threonine kinase, such as the receptor for transforming growth factor β.
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