Matrix Biology | VOL. 111
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Microfibrillar-associated protein 4 in health and disease

Publication Date Aug 1, 2022

Abstract

Microfibrillar-associated protein 4 (MFAP4) is an extracellular matrix protein belonging to the fibrinogen-related domain family. It has been localized to elastic fiber-rich regions in several tissues including the arteries, lungs, heart and skin. MFAP4 binds collagen, fibrillins and tropoelastin and contributes to the process of microfibrillar assembly and maturation of elastic fibers. MFAP4 can also bind RGD-dependent integrins, predominantly αVβ3 and αVβ5 through its N-terminal RGD sequence, modulating cellular behavior. Circulating MFAP4 was suggested as a robust biomarker for hepatitis C virus- and alcoholic liver disease-related liver fibrosis, cardiovascular disorders and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. In mice, MFAP4 seems to have a widely redundant role under homeostatic conditions, as global MFAP4 deficiency results in a mild pulmonary phenotype, causing emphysema-like airspace enlargement that progresses with age. However, emerging in vivo and in vitro data suggest that MFAP4 is actively involved in the pathogenesis of remodeling-associated diseases, including fibrosis, cardiovascular disorders, aging, asthma and cancer through activation of integrin-mediated signaling as well as by modulating TGF-β pathway, thus supporting maladaptive matrix remodeling. This review summarizes the current knowledge about MFAP4 structure and localization, its mechanisms of action in disease-induced tissue remodeling as well as its potential role as a clinical biomarker.

Concepts

Microfibrillar-associated Protein 4 Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease Assembly Of Elastic Fibers Homeostatic Conditions Cardiovascular Disorders Alcoholic Liver Fibrosis Clinical Biomarker Mechanisms Of Action Maturation Of Fibers Assembly Of Fibers

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