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      TGF-β/Smad signaling in renal fibrosis

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          Abstract

          TGF-β (transforming growth factor-β) is well identified as a central mediator in renal fibrosis. TGF-β initiates canonical and non-canonical pathways to exert multiple biological effects. Among them, Smad signaling is recognized as a major pathway of TGF-β signaling in progressive renal fibrosis. During fibrogenesis, Smad3 is highly activated, which is associated with the down-regulation of an inhibitory Smad7 via an ubiquitin E3-ligases-dependent degradation mechanism. The equilibrium shift between Smad3 and Smad7 leads to accumulation and activation of myofibroblasts, overproduction of ECM (extracellular matrix), and reduction in ECM degradation in the diseased kidney. Therefore, overexpression of Smad7 has been shown to be a therapeutic agent for renal fibrosis in various models of kidney diseases. In contrast, another downstream effecter of TGF-β/Smad signaling pathway, Smad2, exerts its renal protective role by counter-regulating the Smad3. Furthermore, recent studies demonstrated that Smad3 mediates renal fibrosis by down-regulating miR-29 and miR-200 but up-regulating miR-21 and miR-192. Thus, overexpression of miR-29 and miR-200 or down-regulation of miR-21 and miR-192 is capable of attenuating Smad3-mediated renal fibrosis in various mouse models of chronic kidney diseases (CKD). Taken together, TGF-β/Smad signaling plays an important role in renal fibrosis. Targeting TGF-β/Smad3 signaling may represent a specific and effective therapy for CKD associated with renal fibrosis.

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          Most cited references 120

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          Smad-dependent and Smad-independent pathways in TGF-beta family signalling.

          Transforming growth factor-beta (TGF-beta) proteins regulate cell function, and have key roles in development and carcinogenesis. The intracellular effectors of TGF-beta signalling, the Smad proteins, are activated by receptors and translocate into the nucleus, where they regulate transcription. Although this pathway is inherently simple, combinatorial interactions in the heteromeric receptor and Smad complexes, receptor-interacting and Smad-interacting proteins, and cooperation with sequence-specific transcription factors allow substantial versatility and diversification of TGF-beta family responses. Other signalling pathways further regulate Smad activation and function. In addition, TGF-beta receptors activate Smad-independent pathways that not only regulate Smad signalling, but also allow Smad-independent TGF-beta responses.
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            Mechanisms of TGF-beta signaling from cell membrane to the nucleus.

            TGF-beta signaling controls a plethora of cellular responses and figures prominently in animal development. Recent cellular, biochemical, and structural studies have revealed significant insight into the mechanisms of the activation of TGF-beta receptors through ligand binding, the activation of Smad proteins through phosphorylation, the transcriptional regulation of target gene expression, and the control of Smad protein activity and degradation. This article reviews these latest advances and presents our current understanding on the mechanisms of TGF-beta signaling from cell membrane to the nucleus.
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              Mechanisms of fibrosis: therapeutic translation for fibrotic disease.

              Fibrosis is a pathological feature of most chronic inflammatory diseases. Fibrosis, or scarring, is defined by the accumulation of excess extracellular matrix components. If highly progressive, the fibrotic process eventually leads to organ malfunction and death. Fibrosis affects nearly every tissue in the body. Here we discuss how key components of the innate and adaptive immune response contribute to the pathogenesis of fibrosis. We also describe how cell-intrinsic changes in important structural cells can perpetuate the fibrotic response by regulating the differentiation, recruitment, proliferation and activation of extracellular matrix-producing myofibroblasts. Finally, we highlight some of the key mechanisms and pathways of fibrosis that are being targeted as potential therapies for a variety of important human diseases.
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                Author and article information

                Contributors
                Journal
                Front Physiol
                Front Physiol
                Front. Physiol.
                Frontiers in Physiology
                Frontiers Media S.A.
                1664-042X
                19 March 2015
                2015
                : 6
                10.3389/fphys.2015.00082
                4365692
                Copyright © 2015 Meng, Tang, Li and Lan.

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) or licensor are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

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                Figures: 3, Tables: 0, Equations: 0, References: 120, Pages: 8, Words: 7250
                Categories
                Physiology
                Review

                Anatomy & Physiology

                mechanisms, therapeutics, renal fibrosis, smads mediators, tgf-ß

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