Transforming growth factor-beta1 (TGF-beta1) plays a central role in the response of the brain to different types of injury. Increased TGF-beta1 has been found in the central nervous system of patients with acute or chronic disorders such as stroke or Alzheimer disease. To further define the molecular targets of TGF-beta1 in cerebral tissues, a selection of high-density cDNA arrays was used to characterize the mRNA expression profile of 7,000 genes in transgenic mice overexpressing TGF-beta1 from astrocytes as compared with the wild-type line. Selected findings were further evaluated by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reactions from independent transgenic and wild-type mice. Furthermore, the expression pattern of seven selected genes such as Delta-1, CRADD, PRSC-1, PAI-1, Apo-1/Fas, CTS-B, and TbetaR-II were confirmed in either cultured cortical neurons or astrocytes following TGF-beta1 treatment. The authors' observations enlarge the repertoire of known TGF-beta1-modulated genes and their possible involvement in neurodegenerative processes.