Insulin-like growth factors and their binding proteins in prostate cancer: Cause or consequence?

Department of Urology, Leonard Miller School of Medicine, University of Miami, Miami, FL 33101, USA.
Urologic Oncology (Impact Factor: 3.36). 07/2006; 24(4):294-306. DOI: 10.1016/j.urolonc.2005.12.004
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Insulin-like growth factors (IGFs) promote growth and survival of many types of tumor cells. Epidemiologic studies have implicated carcinogenesis with high levels of IGFs in circulation or in tissues. The levels of IGF binding proteins (IGFBPs) have been associated with reduced risk for prostate and other cancers. Experimental studies have implicated high levels of IGF-I directly and IGFBP-3 inversely in prostate cancer growth, survival, and progression. However, recent evidence suggests a much weaker association of IGF-I with prostate cancer development and a stronger antagonistic association of IGFBP-3 with prostate cancer progression. Considering the clonal heterogeneity and unpredictable progression pattern of prostate cancer, the role of any single growth factor or its regulator (IGFBP) as a single determining factor is limited. This review is a critical appraisal of the role of IGFs, IGFBP, and IGF-I receptor (the IGF axis) in both experimental and clinical prostate cancer genesis and progression.

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