Insulin/IGF and target of rapamycin signaling: a TOR de force in growth control

Trends Cell Biol. 2003 Feb;13(2):79-85. doi: 10.1016/s0962-8924(02)00042-9.


'They come in all sizes.' Apart from its origin and use in the clothing industry, this saying reflects the fact that the size of organisms spans an enormous range. Whether destined to be large or small, species grow in an organized fashion to reach their final specified size. For growth to proceed, food must be metabolized to liberate energy in the form of adenosine triphosphate (ATP) and protein building blocks in the form of amino acids. One major orchestrator of this complex growth process in diverse metazoan species is the insulin/insulin-like growth factor (IGF) system. This review summarizes current studies primarily from Drosophila regarding the function of the insulin/IGF system in the control of growth.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animal Population Groups / growth & development*
  • Animal Population Groups / metabolism
  • Animals
  • Body Constitution / genetics*
  • Drosophila Proteins / metabolism*
  • Energy Metabolism / physiology
  • Eukaryotic Cells / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Insulin / metabolism*
  • Insulin-Like Growth Factor I / metabolism*
  • Phosphatidylinositol 3-Kinases / metabolism*
  • Protein Kinases
  • Signal Transduction / physiology
  • TOR Serine-Threonine Kinases


  • Drosophila Proteins
  • Insulin
  • Insulin-Like Growth Factor I
  • Protein Kinases
  • Phosphatidylinositol 3-Kinases
  • target of rapamycin protein, Drosophila
  • TOR Serine-Threonine Kinases