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Neuroserpin is a member of the serpin family of serine protease inhibitors predominantly expressed in the nervous system, such as s the cerebral cortex, hippocampus and the spinal cord.Neuroserpin exerts protective effects in neurons against excitotoxicity both in vitro and in vivo. Its proteolytic inhibitory activity is shown to protect neurons against damage caused by plasmin activation. Mice overexpressing neuroserpin exhibited loss of tPA activity in the brain. Overexpression of neuroserpin in primary neurons leads to increased dendritic arborization and altered dendritic spine shape.