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Special Issue "The Role of the IGF Axis in the Disease"

A special issue of International Journal of Molecular Sciences (ISSN 1422-0067). This special issue belongs to the section "Molecular Endocrinology and Metabolism".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 December 2020).

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Claire M Perks
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Insulin-like Growth Factors and Metabolic Endocrinology Group, Bristol Medical School, Southmead Hospital, Bristol, UK
Interests: metabolic disturbances; IGFs and epithelial cancers
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

This research topic aims to highlight the key roles that members of the IGF axis (ligands, IGFBPs, and receptors) play in the risk and progression of cancer and how these roles are often exacerbated by disturbed metabolic status. It will encompass their roles in cancer risk and how they utilise the hallmarks of cancer, such as angiogenesis, proliferation, metabolism and survival, to drive tumour development and potential approaches to target this axis.

Dr. Claire M Perks
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Molecular Sciences is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. There is an Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal. For details about the APC please see here. Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • IGF axis
  • Cancer
  • Obesity
  • Hallmarks of cancer

Published Papers (7 papers)

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Research

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Article
Phenotypic Characterization of Transgenic Mice Expressing Human IGFBP-5
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2021, 22(1), 335; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijms22010335 - 30 Dec 2020
Viewed by 865
Abstract
Pulmonary fibrosis is one of the important causes of morbidity and mortality in fibroproliferative disorders such as systemic sclerosis (SSc) and idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF). Insulin-like growth factor binding protein-5 (IGFBP-5) is a conserved member of the IGFBP family of proteins that is [...] Read more.
Pulmonary fibrosis is one of the important causes of morbidity and mortality in fibroproliferative disorders such as systemic sclerosis (SSc) and idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF). Insulin-like growth factor binding protein-5 (IGFBP-5) is a conserved member of the IGFBP family of proteins that is overexpressed in SSc and IPF lung tissues. In this study, we investigated the functional role of IGFBP-5 in the development of fibrosis in vivo using a transgenic model. We generated transgenic mice ubiquitously expressing human IGFBP-5 using CRISPR/Cas9 knock-in. Our data show that the heterozygous and homozygous mice are viable and express human IGFBP-5 (hIGFBP-5). Transgenic mice had increased expression of extracellular matrix (ECM) genes, especially Col3a1, Fn, and Lox in lung and skin tissues of mice expressing higher transgene levels. Histologic analysis of the skin tissues showed increased dermal thickness, and the lung histology showed subtle changes in the heterozygous and homozygous mice as compared with the wild-type mice. These changes were more pronounced in animals expressing higher levels of hIGFBP-5. Bleomycin increased ECM gene expression in wild-type mice and accentuated an increase in ECM gene expression in transgenic mice, suggesting that transgene expression exacerbated bleomycin-induced pulmonary fibrosis. Primary lung fibroblasts cultured from lung tissues of homozygous transgenic mice showed significant increases in ECM gene expression and protein levels, further supporting the observation that IGFBP-5 resulted in a fibrotic phenotype in fibroblasts. In summary, transgenic mice expressing human IGFBP-5 could serve as a useful animal model for examining the function of IGFBP-5 in vivo. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Role of the IGF Axis in the Disease)
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Article
Glucose Concentration in Cell Culture Medium Influences the BRCA1-Mediated Regulation of the Lipogenic Action of IGF-I in Breast Cancer Cells
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2020, 21(22), 8674; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijms21228674 - 17 Nov 2020
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Abstract
Hyperglycaemia is a common metabolic alteration associated with breast cancer risk and progression. We have previously reported that BRCA1 restrains metabolic activity and proliferative response to IGF-I anabolic actions in breast cancer cells cultured in high glucose. Here, we evaluated the impact of [...] Read more.
Hyperglycaemia is a common metabolic alteration associated with breast cancer risk and progression. We have previously reported that BRCA1 restrains metabolic activity and proliferative response to IGF-I anabolic actions in breast cancer cells cultured in high glucose. Here, we evaluated the impact of normal physiological glucose on these tumour suppressive roles of BRCA1. Human breast cancer cells cultured in normal physiological and high glucose were treated with IGF-I (0–500 ng/mL). Cellular responses were evaluated using immunoblotting, co-immunoprecipitation, and cell viability assay. As we previously reported, IGF-I induced ACCA dephosphorylation by reducing the association between BRCA1 and phosphorylated ACCA in high glucose, and upregulated FASN abundance downstream of ACCA. However, these effects were not observed in normal glucose. Normal physiological glucose conditions completely blocked IGF-I-induced ACCA dephosphorylation and FASN upregulation. Co-immunoprecipitation studies showed that normal physiological glucose blocked ACCA dephosphorylation by increasing the association between BRCA1 and phosphorylated ACCA. Compared to high glucose, the proliferative response of breast cancer cells to IGF-I was reduced in normal glucose, whereas no difference was observed in normal mammary epithelial cells. Considering these results collectively, we conclude that normal physiological glucose promotes the novel function of BRCA1 as a metabolic restraint of IGF-I actions. These data suggest that maintaining normal glucose levels may improve BRCA1 function in breast cancer and slow down cancer progression. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Role of the IGF Axis in the Disease)
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Review

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Review
Lessons to Learn for Adequate Targeted Therapy Development in Metastatic Colorectal Cancer Patients
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2021, 22(9), 5019; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijms22095019 - 09 May 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 845
Abstract
Insulin-like growth factor 1 receptor (IGF1R) is a receptor tyrosine kinase that regulates cell growth and proliferation. Upregulation of the IGF1R pathway constitutes a common paradigm shared with other receptor tyrosine kinases such as EGFR, HER2, and MET in different cancer types, including [...] Read more.
Insulin-like growth factor 1 receptor (IGF1R) is a receptor tyrosine kinase that regulates cell growth and proliferation. Upregulation of the IGF1R pathway constitutes a common paradigm shared with other receptor tyrosine kinases such as EGFR, HER2, and MET in different cancer types, including colon cancer. The main IGF1R signaling pathways are PI3K-AKT and MAPK-MEK. However, different processes, such as post-translational modification (SUMOylation), epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT), and microenvironment complexity, can also contribute to intrinsic and acquired resistance. Here, we discuss new strategies for adequate drug development in metastatic colorectal cancer patients. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Role of the IGF Axis in the Disease)
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Review
The Role of IGF/IGF-1R Signaling in Hepatocellular Carcinomas: Stemness-Related Properties and Drug Resistance
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2021, 22(4), 1931; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijms22041931 - 16 Feb 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1169
Abstract
Insulin-like Growth Factor (IGF)/IGF-1 Receptor (IGF-1R) signaling is known to regulate stem cell pluripotency and differentiation to trigger cell proliferation, organ development, and tissue regeneration during embryonic development. Unbalanced IGF/IGF-1R signaling can promote cancer cell proliferation and activate cancer reprogramming in tumor tissues, [...] Read more.
Insulin-like Growth Factor (IGF)/IGF-1 Receptor (IGF-1R) signaling is known to regulate stem cell pluripotency and differentiation to trigger cell proliferation, organ development, and tissue regeneration during embryonic development. Unbalanced IGF/IGF-1R signaling can promote cancer cell proliferation and activate cancer reprogramming in tumor tissues, especially in the liver. Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is one of the leading causes of cancer-related death, with a high incidence and mortality rate in Asia. Most patients with advanced HCC develop tyrosine kinase inhibitor (TKI)-refractoriness after receiving TKI treatment. Dysregulation of IGF/IGF-1R signaling in HCC may activate expression of cancer stemness that leads to TKI refractoriness and tumor recurrence. In this review, we summarize the evidence for dysregulated IGF/IGF-1R signaling especially in hepatitis B virus (HBV)-associated HCC. The regulation of cancer stemness expression and drug resistance will be highlighted. Current clinical treatments and potential therapies targeting IGF/IGF-1R signaling for the treatment of HCC will be discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Role of the IGF Axis in the Disease)
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Review
Disrupting Insulin and IGF Receptor Function in Cancer
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2021, 22(2), 555; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijms22020555 - 08 Jan 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 912
Abstract
The insulin and insulin-like growth factor (IGF) system plays an important role in regulating normal cell proliferation and survival. However, the IGF system is also implicated in many malignancies, including breast cancer. Preclinical studies indicate several IGF blocking approaches, such as monoclonal antibodies [...] Read more.
The insulin and insulin-like growth factor (IGF) system plays an important role in regulating normal cell proliferation and survival. However, the IGF system is also implicated in many malignancies, including breast cancer. Preclinical studies indicate several IGF blocking approaches, such as monoclonal antibodies and tyrosine kinase inhibitors, have promising therapeutic potential for treating diseases. Uniformly, phase III clinical trials have not shown the benefit of blocking IGF signaling compared to standard of care arms. Clinical and laboratory data argue that targeting Type I IGF receptor (IGF1R) alone may be insufficient to disrupt this pathway as the insulin receptor (IR) may also be a relevant cancer target. Here, we review the well-studied role of the IGF system in regulating malignancies, the limitations on the current strategies of blocking the IGF system in cancer, and the potential future directions for targeting the IGF system. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Role of the IGF Axis in the Disease)
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Review
Role of Alternatively Spliced Messenger RNA (mRNA) Isoforms of the Insulin-Like Growth Factor 1 (IGF1) in Selected Human Tumors
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2020, 21(19), 6995; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijms21196995 - 23 Sep 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 849
Abstract
Insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF1) is a key regulator of tissue growth and development that is also implicated in the initiation and progression of various cancers. The human IGF1 gene contains six exons and five long introns, the transcription of which is controlled [...] Read more.
Insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF1) is a key regulator of tissue growth and development that is also implicated in the initiation and progression of various cancers. The human IGF1 gene contains six exons and five long introns, the transcription of which is controlled by two promoters (P1 and P2). Alternate promoter usage, as well as alternative splicing (AS) of IGF1, results in the expression of six various variants (isoforms) of mRNA, i.e., IA, IB, IC, IIA, IIB, and IIC. A mature 70-kDa IGF1 protein is coded only by exons 3 and 4, while exons 5 and 6 are alternatively spliced code for the three C-terminal E peptides: Ea (exon 6), Eb (exon 5), and Ec (fragments of exons 5 and 6). The most abundant of those transcripts is IGF1Ea, followed by IGF1Eb and IGF1Ec (also known as mechano-growth factor, MGF). The presence of different IGF1 transcripts suggests tissue-specific auto- and/or paracrine action, as well as separate regulation of both of these gene promoters. In physiology, the role of different IGF1 mRNA isoforms and pro-peptides is best recognized in skeletal muscle tissue. Their functions include the development and regeneration of muscles, as well as maintenance of proper muscle mass. In turn, in nervous tissue, a neuroprotective function of short peptides, produced as a result of IGF1 expression and characterized by significant blood-brain barrier penetrance, has been described and could be a potential therapeutic target. When it comes to the regulation of carcinogenesis, the potential biological role of different var iants of IGF1 mRNAs and pro-peptides is also intensively studied. This review highlights the role of IGF1 isoform expression (mRNAs, proteins) in physiology and different types of human tumors (e.g., breast cancer, cervical cancer, colorectal cancer, osteosarcoma, prostate and thyroid cancers), as well as mechanisms of IGF1 spliced variants involvement in tumor biology. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Role of the IGF Axis in the Disease)
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Review
Is There Evidence for IGF1R-Stimulating Abs in Graves’ Orbitopathy Pathogenesis?
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2020, 21(18), 6561; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijms21186561 - 08 Sep 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 811
Abstract
In this review, we summarize the evidence against direct stimulation of insulin-like growth factor 1 receptors (IGF1Rs) by autoantibodies in Graves’ orbitopathy (GO) pathogenesis. We describe a model of thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) receptor (TSHR)/IGF1R crosstalk and present evidence that observations indicating IGF1R’s role [...] Read more.
In this review, we summarize the evidence against direct stimulation of insulin-like growth factor 1 receptors (IGF1Rs) by autoantibodies in Graves’ orbitopathy (GO) pathogenesis. We describe a model of thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) receptor (TSHR)/IGF1R crosstalk and present evidence that observations indicating IGF1R’s role in GO could be explained by this mechanism. We evaluate the evidence for and against IGF1R as a direct target of stimulating IGF1R antibodies (IGF1RAbs) and conclude that GO pathogenesis does not involve directly stimulating IGF1RAbs. We further conclude that the preponderance of evidence supports TSHR as the direct and only target of stimulating autoantibodies in GO and maintain that the TSHR should remain a major target for further development of a medical therapy for GO in concert with drugs that target TSHR/IGF1R crosstalk. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Role of the IGF Axis in the Disease)
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