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      Role of Insulin-Like Growth Factor Iin Maintaining Normal Glucose Homeostasis

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          Insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I) has significant structural homology with insulin. IGF-I has been shown to bind to insulin receptors to stimulate glucose transport in fat and muscle, to inhibit hepatic glucose output and to lower blood glucose while simultaneously suppressing insulin secretion. However, the precise role of IGF-I in maintaining normal glucose homeostasis and insulin sensitivity is not well defined. Studies in patients with diabetes have shown that in insulin-deficient states, serum IGF-I concentrations are low and increase with insulin therapy. Similarly, administration of insulin via the portal vein results in optimization of plasma IGF-I concentrations. A patient with an IGF1 gene deletion was shown to have severe insulin resistance that improved with IGF-I therapy. Studies conducted in experimental animals have shown that if IGF-I synthesis by the liver is deleted, the animals become insulin-resistant, and this is improved when IGF-I is administered. Likewise, deletion of the IGF-I receptor in muscle in mice induces severe insulin resistance. Administration of IGF-I to patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus has been shown to result in an improvement in insulin sensitivity and a reduction in the requirement for exogenously administered insulin to maintain glucose homeostasis. A polymorphism in the IGF1 gene that has been shown to reduce serum IGF-I results in an increased prevalence of type 2 diabetes. Taken together, these findings support the conclusion that IGF-I is necessary for normal insulin sensitivity, and impairment of IGF-I synthesis results in a worsening state of insulin resistance.

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          Most cited references 13

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          Functional inactivation of the IGF-I and insulin receptors in skeletal muscle causes type 2 diabetes.

          Peripheral insulin resistance and impaired insulin action are the primary characteristics of type 2 diabetes. The first observable defect in this major disorder occurs in muscle, where glucose disposal in response to insulin is impaired. We have developed a transgenic mouse with a dominant-negative insulin-like growth factor-I receptor (KR-IGF-IR) specifically targeted to the skeletal muscle. Expression of KR-IGF-IR resulted in the formation of hybrid receptors between the mutant and the endogenous IGF-I and insulin receptors, thereby abrogating the normal function of these receptors and leading to insulin resistance. Pancreatic beta-cell dysfunction developed at a relative early age, resulting in diabetes. These mice provide an excellent model to study the molecular mechanisms underlying the development of human type 2 diabetes.
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            Liver-specific igf-1 gene deletion leads to muscle insulin insensitivity.

             Xun Liu,  J Frystyk,  Yue Wu (2001)
            Insulin and insulin-like growth factors (IGFs) mediate a variety of signals involved in mammalian development and metabolism. To study the metabolic consequences of IGF-I deficiency, we used the liver IGF-I-deficient (LID) mouse model. The LID mice show a marked reduction (approximately 75%) in circulating IGF-I and elevated growth hormone (GH) levels. Interestingly, LID mice show a fourfold increase in serum insulin levels (2.2 vs. 0.6 ng/ml in control mice) and abnormal glucose clearance after insulin injection. Fasting blood glucose levels and those after a glucose tolerance test were similar between the LID mice and their control littermates. Thus, the high levels of circulating insulin enable the LID mice to maintain normoglycemia in the presence of apparent insulin insensitivity. Insulin-induced autophosphorylation of the insulin receptor and tyrosine phosphorylation of insulin receptor substrate (IRS)-1 were absent in muscle, but were normal in liver and white adipose tissue of the LID mice. In contrast, IGF-I-induced autophosphorylation of its cognate receptor and phosphorylation of IRS-1 were normal in muscle of LID mice. Thus, the insulin insensitivity seen in the LID mice is muscle specific. Recombinant human IGF-I treatment of the LID mice caused a reduction in insulin levels and an increase in insulin sensitivity. Treatment of the LID mice with GH-releasing hormone antagonist, which reduces GH levels, also increased insulin sensitivity. These data provide evidence of the role of circulating IGF-I as an important component of overall insulin action in peripheral tissues.
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              A polymorphism in the gene for IGF-I: functional properties and risk for type 2 diabetes and myocardial infarction.

              Evidence is accumulating that low levels of IGF-I play a role in the pathogenesis of type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular diseases. We examined the role of a genetic polymorphism in the promoter region of the IGF-I gene in relation to circulating IGF-I levels and growth measured as body height, and we studied the relationship of this polymorphism with type 2 diabetes and myocardial infarction. The relation between the IGF-I polymorphism and body height was assessed in a population-based sample of 900 subjects from the Rotterdam Study. Within each genotype stratum, 50 subjects were randomly selected for a study of the relation of this polymorphism with serum IGF-I levels. To assess the risk for type 2 diabetes, we studied 220 patients and 596 normoglycemic control subjects. For myocardial infarction, 477 patients with evidence of myocardial infarction on electrocardiogram and 808 control subjects were studied. A 192-bp allele was present in 88% of the population, suggesting that this is the wild-type allele from which all other alleles originated. Body height was, on average, 2.7 cm lower (95% CI for difference -4.6 to -0.8 cm, P = 0.004), and serum IGF-I concentrations were 18% lower (95% CI for difference -6.0 to -1.3 mmol/l, P = 0.003) in subjects who did not carry the 192-bp allele. In noncarriers of the 192-bp allele, an increased relative risk for type 2 diabetes (1.7 [95% CI 1.1-2.7]) and for myocardial infarction (1.7 [95% CI 1.1-2.5]) was found. In patients with type 2 diabetes, the relative risk for myocardial infarction in subjects without the 192-bp allele was 3.4 (95% CI 1.1-11.3). Our study suggests that a genetically determined exposure to relatively low IGF-I levels is associated with an increased risk for type 2 diabetes and myocardial infarction.

                Author and article information

                Horm Res Paediatr
                Hormone Research in Paediatrics
                S. Karger AG
                February 2005
                10 March 2005
                : 62
                : Suppl 1
                : 77-82
                Department of Medicine, UNC School of Medicine, Chapel Hill, N.C., USA
                80763 Horm Res 2004;62(suppl 1):77–82
                © 2004 S. Karger AG, Basel

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                Page count
                Figures: 3, References: 18, Pages: 6


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