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S100B is glial-specific and is expressed primarily by astrocytes, but not all astrocytes express S100B. It has been shown that S100B is only expressed by a subtype of mature astrocytes that ensheath blood vessels and by NG2-expressing cells. This protein may function in neurite extension, proliferation of melanoma cells, stimulation of Ca2+ fluxes, inhibition of PKC-mediated phosphorylation, astrocytosis and axonal proliferation, and inhibition of microtubule assembly. In the developing CNS it acts as a neurotrophic factor and neuronal survival protein. In the adult organism it is usually elevated due to nervous system damage, which makes it a potential clinical marker.