FunctionDuring development, promotes the survival and differentiation of selected neuronal populations of the peripheral and central nervous systems. Participates in axonal growth, pathfinding and in the modulation of dendritic growth and morphology. Major regulator of synaptic transmission and plasticity at adult synapses in many regions of the CNS. The versatility of BDNF is emphasized by its contribution to a range of adaptive neuronal responses including long-term potentiation (LTP), long-term depression (LTD), certain forms of short-term synaptic plasticity, as well as homeostatic regulation of intrinsic neuronal excitability.
Tissue specificityBrain. Highly expressed in hippocampus, amygdala, cerebral cortex and cerebellum. Also expressed in heart, lung, skeletal muscle, testis, prostate and placenta.
Involvement in diseaseCongenital central hypoventilation syndrome
Sequence similaritiesBelongs to the NGF-beta family.
Post-translational modificationsThe propeptide is N-glycosylated and glycosulfated. Converted into mature BDNF by plasmin (PLG).