Growth factors in pancreatic health and disease

Pancreatology. 2001;1(4):343-55. doi: 10.1159/000055833.

Abstract

In this article the role of different growth factors and their receptors in the pathogenesis of chronic pancreatitis and pancreatic cancer is discussed. The expression of members of the epidermal growth factor family, the fibroblast growth factor family, the transforming growth factor-beta family, the platelet-derived growth factor family, the nerve growth factor family, the insulin-like growth factor family and their signaling receptors is presented, and a correlation of the molecular data with clinical and pathological changes is performed. A number of these growth factors and their receptors are markedly overexpressed in chronic pancreatitis and pancreatic cancer. In chronic pancreatitis, overexpression of growth factors and their receptors contributes to tissue remodeling and fibrogenesis. In contrast to chronic pancreatitis, pancreatic cancer is associated with a variety of genetic alterations, including mutations in tumor suppressor genes and cell cycle regulators. In the presence of these genetic disturbances, enhanced expression of growth factors and their receptors contributes to cell proliferation and enhances the aggressiveness of pancreatic cancer cells. In summary, growth factors and their receptors are often altered in chronic pancreatitis and pancreatic cancer and contribute to various pathogenetic aspects in these disorders.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Chronic Disease
  • Growth Substances / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Pancreatic Diseases / metabolism
  • Pancreatic Diseases / physiopathology*
  • Pancreatic Neoplasms / physiopathology
  • Pancreatitis / physiopathology
  • Pancrelipase / physiology*

Substances

  • Growth Substances
  • Pancrelipase