Søren Kragh Moestrup

The conserved scavenger receptor cysteine-rich superfamily in therapy and diagnosis

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The scavenger receptor cysteine-rich (SRCR) superfamily of soluble or membrane-bound protein receptors is characterized by the presence of one or several repeats of an ancient and highly conserved protein module, the SRCR domain. This superfamily (SRCR-SF) has been in constant and progressive expansion, now up to more than 30 members. The study of these members is attracting growing interest, which parallels that in innate immunity. No unifying function has been described to date for the SRCR domains, this being the result of the limited knowledge still available on the physiology of most members of the SRCR-SF, but also of the sequence versatility of the SRCR domains. Indeed, involvement of SRCR-SF members in quite different functions, such as pathogen recognition, modulation of the immune response, epithelial homeostasis, stem cell biology, and tumor development, have all been described. This has brought to us new information, unveiling the possibility that targeting or supplementing SRCR-SF proteins could result in diagnostic and/or therapeutic benefit for a number of physiologic and pathologic states. Recent research has provided structural and functional insight into these proteins, facilitating the development of means to modulate the activity of SRCR-SF members. Indeed, some of these approaches are already in use, paving the way for a more comprehensive use of SRCR-SF members in the clinic. The present review will illustrate some available evidence on the potential of well known and new members of the SRCR-SF in this regard.
Original languageEnglish
JournalPharmacological Reviews
Pages (from-to)967-1000
Number of pages34
Publication statusPublished - 2011

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