FGF-1 known as acidic FGF (aFGF) is a 155 amino acid long non-glycosylated polypeptide. FGF-1 does not have a signal peptide and hence, their release is believed to be mediated by non-classical secretory pathways. Under normal physiological conditions, FGF-1 release has been barely detected. However, is found secreted in response to stress conditions such as heat shock, hypoxia [1, 2], serum starvation  and exposure to low-density lipoproteins . Stress induces the release of the inactive disulfide bond-linked homodimeric form of FGF-1, which is dependent on p40-Syt1, S100A13 and Cu2+ ions [5-8]. FGF-1 is known to bind with different affinityto all the four members of the FGF receptors. The binding of FGF-1 to their cognate receptors in different cells induces the activation of diverse signaling pathways such as Ras/Raf/MAPK, PI3K/Akt, PLC, p38MAPK, and JNK pathways among others.
Binding of FGF-1 to the FGFRs in different cell types result in the formation of multiple complexes involving FRS2, GAB1, SOS1, PTPN11, SHC1 and GRB2 [9-14]. These complexes are critical to the subsequent activation of Ras GTPase [9, 12] which associates with Raf kinase  and further phosphorylation dependent activation of MAPK kinases 1/2 (MEK1/2) and subsequently MAPK1/3 (ERK2/1) [15, 16]. ERK pathway is involved in neurogenesis, adipocyte differentiation, cell proliferation, cholesterogenesis, and tumor invasion and metastasis induced by FGF-1 [16-20].
FRS2 complex through GAB1 initiates the activation of PI3K/AKT pathway to regulate processes including cell growth and survival, cell proliferation, and cell migration . PI3K/Akt inhibitor-based assays have indicated the physiological role of this pathway in angiogenesis , lung development , maintenance of neuronal phenotype , neuroprotection  and ApoE-HDL secretion .
The c-jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) pathway is implicated in the regulation of cell cycle, cell survival and apoptosisinduced by FGF-1. p38MAPK signaling cascade, apart from being a stress response pathway, also plays a role in cell growth, differentiation, growth arrest and apoptosis. The JNK1/2 pathway was found to play a crucial role in neurogenesis and vascular remodeling [17, 26]. The specific functions of FGF-1 signaling mediated by p38 MAPK includes growth arrest, promotion of apoptosis in response to oxidative stress and formation of actin stress fibers in prostate cancer cells [27-29].
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