The epidermal growth factor receptors and their family of ligands: their putative role in atherogenesis

Atherosclerosis. 2006 May;186(1):38-53. doi: 10.1016/j.atherosclerosis.2005.06.038. Epub 2005 Aug 1.


The epidermal growth factor receptor is a member of type-I growth factor receptor family with tyrosine kinase activity that is activated following the binding of multiple cognate ligands. Several members of the EGF family of ligands are expressed by cells involved in atherogenesis. EGF receptor mediated processes have been well characterised within epithelial, smooth muscle and tumour cell lines in vitro, and the EGF receptor has been identified immunocytochemically on intimal smooth muscle cells within atherosclerotic plaques. There is also limited evidence for the expression of the EGF receptor family on leukocytes, although their function has yet to be clarified. In this review, we will discuss the biological functions of this receptor and its ligands and their potential to modulate the function of cells involved in the atherosclerotic process.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Atherosclerosis / genetics
  • Atherosclerosis / metabolism*
  • ErbB Receptors / genetics
  • ErbB Receptors / metabolism*
  • Gene Expression
  • Humans
  • Ligands
  • Monocytes / metabolism
  • Risk Factors


  • Ligands
  • ErbB Receptors