also known as fibroblast growth factor 7 (FGF7), is paracrine growth factor produced by mesenchymal cells and mitogenic specifically for epithelial cells.


KGF was discovered in human embryonic lung fibroblasts in 1989 by Ruben et.al1.


Structural Characteristics
KGF is an acid and heat labile single polypeptide chain of approximately 28 kDa is a heparin-binding protein.


Mode of action
KGF acts exclusively through FGF-7 receptor (FGFR2/IIIb), which is expressed predominantly by epithelial cells. KGF/FGF-7 activates nuclear factor B (NF- B), which in turn induces expression of VEGF, MMP-9, and urokinase-type plasminogen activator and increased migration and invasion of KGF/FGF-7-stimulated human pancreatic ductal epithelial cells2.


KGF stimulates epithelial cell proliferation, differentiation or both to affect tissue and organ growth and development. It also alters ion channel functions and induces cellular secretion, cell migration and tissue remodeling3.





1.     Rubin JS, Osada H, Finch PW, Taylor WG, Rudikoff S, Aaronson SA (1989). Purification and characterization of a newly identified growth factor specific for epithelial cells. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A, 86(3):802-806.

2.     Niu J, Chang Z, Peng B, Xia Q, Lu W, Huang P, Tsao MS, Chiao PJ (2007). Keratinocyte growth factor/fibroblast growth factor-7-regulated cell migration and invasion through activation of NF-kappaB transcription factors. J Biol Chem, 282(9):6001-6011.

3.     Book: The endometrium. Chapter 17 Kerotinocyte growth factor arteriotrophic and antiapoptotic effects in the primate endometrium by Stanley R.Glasser, John D. Aplin, and Siamak Tabibzadeh.

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