Stem cell factor (SCF) is the ligand of the c-Kit oncogene and is expressed by various structural and inflammatory cells in the airways. Binding of SCF by the c-Kit receptor leads to homodimerization of the receptor and the activation of signalling pathways such as PI-3, PLC-g, Jak/STAT, and MAP kinase pathways. SCF expression leads to the induction of mast cell survival and the expression and release of histamine, pro-inflammatory cytokines and chemokines. The inhibition of the SCF/c-Kit pathway leads to a decrease in histamine levels, mast cell and eosinophil infiltration, IL-4 production and airway hyperresponsiveness, suggesting this pathway may be a useful therapeutic target in inflammatory diseases such as asthma. At least two isoforms of SCF are known to exist.
Cytokine-cytokine receptor interaction
Hematopoietic cell lineage
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