TGF-β is extensively implicated in the pathogenesis of fibrosis. In fibrotic lesions, spatially restricted generation of bioactive TGF-β from latent stores requires the cooperation of proteases, integrins, and specialized extracellular matrix molecules. Although fibroblasts are major targets of TGF-β, some fibrogenic actions may reflect activation of other cell types, including macrophages, epithelial cells, and vascular cells. TGF-β–driven fibrosis is mediated through Smad-dependent or non-Smad pathways and is modulated by coreceptors and by interacting networks. This review discusses the role of TGF-β in fibrosis, highlighting mechanisms of TGF-β activation and signaling, the cellular targets of TGF-β actions, and the challenges of therapeutic translation.

This article is distributed under the terms of an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike–No Mirror Sites license for the first six months after the publication date (see After six months it is available under a Creative Commons License (Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 4.0 International license, as described at
You do not currently have access to this content.