Overexpression of insulin-like growth factor-binding protein-2 in transgenic mice reduces postnatal body weight gain

Endocrinology. 1999 Dec;140(12):5488-96. doi: 10.1210/endo.140.12.7169.


Insulin-like growth factor (IGF)-binding protein-2 (IGFBP-2) has been shown to inhibit IGF-dependent cell proliferation in a number of in vitro studies. However, no in vivo model of IGFBP-2 overexpression has been established so far. Therefore, we have generated transgenic mice, in which expression of a mouse IGFBP-2 complementary DNA is controlled by the cytomegalovirus (CMV) promoter. In two independent transgenic strains, transgene expression was highest in pancreas and stomach, followed by skeletal muscle, heart, colon, spleen, adipose tissue, brain, and kidney. Within the pancreas, IGFBP-2 expression was found in the islets but not in the exocrine part. Serum IGFBP-2 levels of CMV-IGFBP-2 transgenic mice were about 3-fold (P < 0.05) increased, compared with controls, whereas serum levels of IGF-I and IGF-II were unaffected by IGFBP-2 overexpression. Fasted serum glucose and fasted insulin levels were slightly reduced in transgenic mice, compared with controls. Postprandial serum glucose insulin levels were not affected by the genotype. At days later than 23, body weights of transgenic mice were significantly (P < 0.05) reduced in both sexes, compared with nontransgenic littermates. This reduction in body weight was mainly attributable to significantly (P < 0.05) lower carcass weights of CMV-IGFBP-2 transgenic vs. control mice. In contrast, absolute organ weights were not (or only as a tendency) reduced, except for the weight of the spleen, which was significantly (P < 0.05) lower in male transgenic than in control mice. Our data suggest that IGFBP-2 represents a negative regulator of postnatal growth in mice, potentially by reducing the bioavailability of IGF-I.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Blood Glucose / metabolism
  • Blotting, Northern
  • Cytomegalovirus / genetics
  • DNA, Complementary / genetics
  • Fasting
  • Female
  • Gastric Mucosa / metabolism
  • Gene Expression*
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Insulin / blood
  • Insulin-Like Growth Factor Binding Protein 2 / genetics*
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Transgenic
  • Organ Specificity
  • Pancreas / metabolism
  • Promoter Regions, Genetic
  • RNA, Messenger / analysis
  • Somatomedins / metabolism
  • Weight Gain*


  • Blood Glucose
  • DNA, Complementary
  • Insulin
  • Insulin-Like Growth Factor Binding Protein 2
  • RNA, Messenger
  • Somatomedins