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Insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I) is a more potent regulator of gene expression than insulin in primary human myoblasts and myotubes

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Audrey Brown, Professor Mark Walker


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Conventionally, insulin is believed to induce a metabolic response, and IGF-I a mitogenic/differentiation response in vivo. However, several studies indicate that the roles of insulin and IGF-I may not be that easy to separate. In this study, insulin and IGF-I specificity in terms of gene regulation was investigated in primary human skeletal muscle cells before and after differentiation. Cell cultures were treated with 100 nM insulin. IGF-I or nothing for 4 h, and gene expression was subsequently determined using the Affymetrix microarray platform. Insulin and IGF-I receptor levels were determined by qRT-PCR and by radioligand binding assays. In primary myoblasts, insulin did not have any significant effect on gene expression, whereas IGF-I regulated 229 genes. In primary myotubes, insulin regulated 105 genes, whereas IGF-I regulated 697 genes. Additionally, 99 genes were found to be differentially regulated by insulin and IGF-I in a dirrect comparion. The majority of these genes were specifically regulated by IGF-I 16 genes were regulated by both ligands, and no genes were regulated by only insulin. The microarray results correlated with low levels of insulin receptors compared to IGF-I receptors as determined by radioligand binding assays. In the myotubes, we did not identify any ligand specificity in terms of functional categories. The major difference between the two ligands was their respective potencies in gene regulation, which was higher for IGF-I than for insulin. This was true for genes involved in both mitrogenic and metabolic regulations. The data suggest that IGF-I is a more important metabolic regulator in skeletal muscle than previously estimated. (C) 2008 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Palsgaard J, Brown AE, Jensen M, Borup R, Walker M, De Meyts P

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Growth Hormone & IGF Research

Year: 2009

Volume: 19

Issue: 2

Pages: 168-178

ISSN (print): 1096-6374

ISSN (electronic):

Publisher: Churchill Livingstone


DOI: 10.1016/j.ghir.2008.09.004


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