The role of growth factors as a therapeutic approach to demyelinating disease

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Abstract

A variety of growth factors are being explored as therapeutic agents relevant to the axonal and oligodendroglial deficits that occur as a result of demyelinating lesions such as are evident in Multiple Sclerosis (MS). This review focuses on five such proteins that are present in the lesion site and impact oligodendrocyte regeneration. It then presents approaches that are being exploited to manipulate the lesion environment affiliated with multiple neurodegenerative diseases and suggests that the utility of these approaches can extend to demyelination. Challenges are to further understand the roles of specific growth factors on a cellular and tissue level. Emerging technologies can then be employed to optimize the use of growth factors to ameliorate the deficits associated with demyelinating degenerative diseases.

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