Neurotrophin-4 (IPR020432)

Short name: Neurotrophin-4

Overlapping homologous superfamilies

Family relationships


During the development of the vertebrate nervous system, many neurons become redundant (because they have died, failed to connect to target cells, etc.) and are eliminated. At the same time, developing neurons send out axon outgrowths that contact their target cells [PMID: 2369898]. Such cells control their degree of innervation (the number of axon connections) by the secretion of various specific neurotrophic factors that are essential for neuron survival. One of these is nerve growth factor (NGF), which is involved in the survival of some classes of embryonic neuron (e.g., peripheral sympathetic neurons) [PMID: 2369898]. NGF is mostly found outside the central nervous system (CNS), but slight traces have been detected in adult CNS tissues, although a physiological role for this is unknown [PMID: 2369898]; it has also been found in several snake venoms [PMID: 1477101, PMID: 1995338]. Proteins similar to NGF include brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and neurotrophins 3 to 7, all of which demonstrate neuron survival and outgrowth activities.

Neurotrophin-4 (NT-4) exerts its effects by binding to neurotrophic tyrosine kinase receptor type 2 (NTRK2; also called TrkB). NT-4 has been shown to play a crucial role in the development of long-term memory [PMID: 10869436]. It has also been implicated in the regulation of appetite and in body weight control [PMID: 18063676].

GO terms

Biological Process

No terms assigned in this category.

Molecular Function

GO:0008083 growth factor activity

Cellular Component

GO:0005576 extracellular region

Contributing signatures

Signatures from InterPro member databases are used to construct an entry.