Indexed on: 23 Aug '11Published on: 23 Aug '11Published in: Cellular and Molecular Life Sciences
CCN2, also known as connective tissue growth factor, is a member of the CCN (CCN1-6) family of modular matricellular proteins. Analysis of CCN2 function in vivo has focused primarily on its key role as a mediator of excess ECM synthesis in multiple fibrotic diseases. However, CCN2 and related family members are widely expressed during development. Recent studies using new genetic models are revealing that CCN2 has essential roles in the development of many tissues. This review focuses on current and emerging data on CCN2 and its functions in chondrogenesis and angiogenesis, and on new studies showing that CCN2 has essential functions during embryonic and postnatal development in a number of epithelial tissues.