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Neuregulin-1 (NRG-1) and its signaling receptors, erythroblastic leukemia viral oncogene homologs (ErbB) 2, 3, and 4, have been implicated in both cardiomyocyte development and disease, as well as in homeostatic cardiac function. NRG-1/ErbB signaling is involved in a multitude of cardiac processes ranging from myocardial and cardiac conduction system development to angiogenic support of cardiomyocytes, to cardioprotective effects upon injury. Numerous studies of NRG-1 employ a variety of platforms, including in vitro assays, animal models, and human clinical trials, with equally varying and, sometimes, contradictory outcomes. NRG-1 has the potential to be used as a therapeutic tool in stem cell therapies, tissue engineering applications, and clinical diagnostics and treatment. This review presents a concise summary of the growing body of literature to highlight the temporally persistent significance of NRG-1/ErbB signaling throughout development, homeostasis, and disease in the heart, specifically in cardiomyocytes.
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