Connective tissue growth factor: a novel player in tissue reorganization after brain injury?


: Dr S. Werner, as above.


Recent studies have suggested a role of connective tissue growth factor (CTGF) in repair processes of the skin as well as in various types of fibrotic disease. However, a function of this molecule in central nervous system (CNS) repair has not been demonstrated yet. In this study we analysed the temporal and spatial expression pattern of CTGF after unilateral kainic acid lesions of the hippocampal CA3 region in mice. We found a strong induction of CTGF mRNA and protein expression in neurons and glial cells of the lesioned hippocampus. Interestingly, increased expression of this mitogen was accompanied by elevated levels of the extracellular matrix molecule fibronectin, which is a known target of CTGF action. Therefore, our data indicate a novel function of CTGF in postlesional restructuring of the hippocampus, where it possibly participates in glial scar formation.