Name = growth differentiation factor 3
caption =

width =
HGNCid = 4218
Symbol = GDF3
AltSymbols =
EntrezGene = 9573
OMIM = 606522
RefSeq = NM_020634
UniProt = Q9NR23
ECnumber =
Chromosome = 12
Arm = p
Band = 13.1
LocusSupplementaryData =

Growth differentiation factor-3 (GDF3) is also known as Vg-related gene 2 (Vgr-2) is protein belonging to the transforming growth factor beta (TGF-β) superfamily.

It has high similarity to other TGF-β superfamily members called Vg1 (found in frogs), BMP2, BMP6 and GDF1, but lacks one of the conserved cysteine residues common to all other TGF-β superfamily members. [cite journal |author=Caricasole A, van Schaik R, Zeinstra L, Wierikx C, van Gurp R, van den Pol M, Looijenga L, Oosterhuis J, Pera M, Ward A, de Bruijn D, Kramer P, de Jong F, van den Eijnden-van Raaij A |title=Human growth-differentiation factor 3 (hGDF3): developmental regulation in human teratocarcinoma cell lines and expression in primary testicular germ cell tumours |journal=Oncogene |volume=16 |issue=1 |pages=95–103 |year=1998 |pmid=9467948 |doi=10.1038/sj.onc.1201515] Expression of GDF3 occurs in ossifying bone during embryonic development and in the brain, thymus, spleen, bone marrow and adipose tissue of adults. [cite journal |author=Chen C, Ware S, Sato A, Houston-Hawkins D, Habas R, Matzuk M, Shen M, Brown C |title=The Vg1-related protein Gdf3 acts in a Nodal signaling pathway in the pre-gastrulation mouse embryo |journal=Development |volume=133 |issue=2 |pages=319–29 |year=2006 |pmid=16368929 |doi=10.1242/dev.02210] [cite journal |author=Hexige S, Guo J, Ma L, Sun Y, Liu X, Ma L, Yan X, Li Z, Yu L |title=Expression pattern of growth/differentiation factor 3 in human and murine cerebral cortex, hippocampus as well as cerebellum |journal=Neurosci Lett |volume=389 |issue=2 |pages=83–7 |year=2005 |pmid=16126341 |doi=10.1016/j.neulet.2005.06.071]

GDF3 is a bi-functional protein that inhibits some TGF-β superfamily members (e.g. BMPs) while activating others, thus regulating the balance between different modes of TGF-beta signaling. [cite journal |author=Levine A, Brivanlou A |title=GDF3 at the crossroads of TGF-beta signaling |journal=Cell Cycle |volume=5 |issue=10 |pages=1069–73 |year=2006 |pmid=16721050] It has been shown to negatively and positively control differentiation of embryonic stem cells in mice and humans. [cite journal |author=Levine A, Brivanlou A |title=GDF3, a BMP inhibitor, regulates cell fate in stem cells and early embryos |journal=Development |volume=133 |issue=2 |pages=209–16 |year=2006 |pmid=16339188 |doi=10.1242/dev.02192] This molecule plays a role in mesoderm and definitive endoderm formation during the pre-gastrulation stages of development. [cite journal |author=Chen C, Ware S, Sato A, Houston-Hawkins D, Habas R, Matzuk M, Shen M, Brown C |title=The Vg1-related protein Gdf3 acts in a Nodal signaling pathway in the pre-gastrulation mouse embryo |journal=Development |volume=133 |issue=2 |pages=319–29 |year=2006 |pmid=16368929 |doi=10.1242/dev.02210]


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