Relaxin, which is a peptide hormone of the insulin superfamily, is involved in the promotion of extracellular matrix remodeling. This property is responsible for many well-known reproductive functions of relaxin. Recent important findings, including the identification of the relaxin receptor and the development of the relaxin-null mouse, have identified new targets and mechanisms for relaxin's actions, which resulted in unprecedented advances in the field. Relaxin has emerged as a natural suppressor of age-related fibrosis in many tissues, which include the skin, lung, kidney, and heart. Furthermore, relaxin has shown efficacy in the prevention and treatment of a variety of models of experimentally induced fibrosis. The intention of this review is to present a summary of recent advances in relaxin research, with a focus on areas of potential translational research on fibrosis in nonreproductive organs.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
- Biochemistry, medical
- Physiology (medical)