HGF is identical to scatter factor SF, a fibroblast-derived soluble factor that promotes the dissociation of epithelial and vascular endothelial cells colonies in monolayer cultures by stimulating cells migration.
Activities of HGF include induction of cell proliferation, motility, morphogenesis, inhibition of cell growth, and enhancement of neuron survival.
HGF also plays a significant role as a paracrine or endocrine mediator through an epithelial-mesenchymal interaction in wound-healing, tissue or organ regeneration, morphogenesis and carcinogenesis. HGF is involved in the improvement of neuron survival.
HGF is a potent mitogen for mature parenchymal hepatocyte cells and a variety of other cells, including endothelial and epithelial cells, melanocytes, and keratinocytes. HGF is essential for liver regeneration, especially after partial hepatectomy and other liver injuries. It also mediates epithelial morphogenesis.