Hepatocyte growth factor is a potent mitogen for cultured rabbit renal tubular epithelial cells

Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 1991 Jan 31;174(2):831-8. doi: 10.1016/0006-291x(91)91493-v.


Hepatocyte growth factor (HGF), which is a potent growth factor of adult rat hepatocytes in primary culture, also strongly stimulated DNA synthesis of rabbit renal tubular epithelial cells in secondary culture. Its mitogenic activity was dose-dependent, being detectable at 3 ng/ml and maximal at 30 ng/ml. Over 20% of the cells were shifted to the S-phase by HGF alone, judging by the labeling index. HGF had additive effects with EGF, acidic fibroblast growth factor (a-FGF), and insulin. Transforming growth factor-beta 1 (TGF-beta 1) strongly inhibited DNA synthesis of renal tubular cells stimulated by HGF. The growth of renal tubular epithelial cells was also regulated by cell density: DNA synthesis stimulated by HGF was high at lower cell density and was strongly suppressed at high cell density. These results suggest that HGF may act as a renotropic factor in compensatory renal growth or renal regeneration in vivo.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cells, Cultured
  • DNA Replication / drug effects*
  • Epidermal Growth Factor / pharmacology
  • Fibroblast Growth Factor 1 / pharmacology
  • Growth Substances / pharmacology*
  • Hepatocyte Growth Factor
  • Idoxuridine / metabolism
  • Insulin / pharmacology
  • Kidney Cortex / cytology*
  • Kidney Cortex / drug effects
  • Kidney Tubules / cytology*
  • Kidney Tubules / drug effects
  • Kinetics
  • Male
  • Rabbits
  • Recombinant Proteins / pharmacology
  • Transforming Growth Factor beta / pharmacology


  • Growth Substances
  • Insulin
  • Recombinant Proteins
  • Transforming Growth Factor beta
  • Fibroblast Growth Factor 1
  • Epidermal Growth Factor
  • Hepatocyte Growth Factor
  • Idoxuridine