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Growth factors and cytokines in bone cell metabolism.

Canalis E, McCarthy TL, Centrella M.

Research Laboratory, Saint Francis Hospital and Medical Center, Hartford, Connecticut 06105.

Growth factors regulate the growth and differentiated function of cells. Skeletal cells synthesize fibroblast growth factor, platelet-derived growth factor, insulin-like growth factor, transforming growth factor beta, and additional cytokines. Some of the growth factors produced by bone cells primarily stimulate bone cell replication, whereas others also affect the differentiated function of the osteoblast. Skeletal growth factors also may play a role in the pathogenesis and therapy of metabolic bone disease.