Comprehensive analysis of FGF and FGFR expression in skin: FGF18 is highly expressed in hair follicles and capable of inducing anagen from telogen stage hair follicles

J Invest Dermatol. 2005 May;124(5):877-85. doi: 10.1111/j.0022-202X.2005.23693.x.


We quantified the mRNA expression of all 22 fibroblast growth factor family members (FGF) and their four receptors (FGFR) in adult mouse full-thickness skin at various stages of the hair growth cycle. We found that in addition to mRNA encoding FGF previously identified in skin (FGF1, 2, 5, 7, 10, 13, and 22), FGF18 mRNA was also strongly expressed. Expression of these FGF varied throughout hair growth cycle: mRNA expression of FGF18 and 13 peaked at telogen; FGF7 and 10 at anagen V; and FGF5 and 22 at anagen VI. In situ hybridization revealed that FGF18 mRNA is mainly expressed in the anagen inner root sheath and telogen bulge of hair follicles. In culture, FGF18 stimulated DNA synthesis in human dermal fibroblasts, dermal papilla cells, epidermal keratinocytes and vascular endothelial cells. When FGF18 was administered subcutaneously to mice in a uniform telogen state, anagen hair growth was observed. Our findings suggest that FGF18 is important for the regulation of hair growth and the maintenance of skin in adult mice.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • DNA / biosynthesis
  • ErbB Receptors / genetics*
  • Fibroblast Growth Factors / genetics*
  • Hair Follicle / growth & development*
  • Hair Follicle / metabolism*
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C3H
  • RNA, Messenger / analysis


  • RNA, Messenger
  • fibroblast growth factor 18
  • Fibroblast Growth Factors
  • DNA
  • ErbB Receptors