Modifying IGF1 activity: an approach to treat endocrine disorders, atherosclerosis and cancer

Nat Rev Drug Discov. 2007 Oct;6(10):821-33. doi: 10.1038/nrd2359.


Insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF1) is a polypeptide hormone that has a high degree of structural similarity to human proinsulin. Owing to its ubiquitous nature and its role in promoting cell growth, strategies to inhibit IGF1 actions are being pursued as potential adjunctive measures for treating diseases such as short stature, atherosclerosis and diabetes. In addition, most tumour cell types possess IGF1 receptors and conditions in the tumour microenvironment, such as hypoxia, can lead to enhanced responsiveness to IGF1. Therefore, inhibiting IGF1 action has been proposed as a specific mechanism for potentiating the effects of existing anticancer therapies or for directly inhibiting tumour cell growth.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal* / chemistry
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal* / pharmacology
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal* / therapeutic use
  • Atherosclerosis / drug therapy*
  • Atherosclerosis / metabolism
  • Endocrine System Diseases / drug therapy*
  • Endocrine System Diseases / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Insulin-Like Growth Factor Binding Proteins / metabolism
  • Insulin-Like Growth Factor I* / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Insulin-Like Growth Factor I* / biosynthesis
  • Insulin-Like Growth Factor I* / physiology
  • Ligands
  • Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Neoplasms / metabolism
  • Protein Kinase Inhibitors* / chemistry
  • Protein Kinase Inhibitors* / pharmacology
  • Protein Kinase Inhibitors* / therapeutic use
  • Receptor, IGF Type 1 / antagonists & inhibitors


  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Insulin-Like Growth Factor Binding Proteins
  • Ligands
  • Protein Kinase Inhibitors
  • Insulin-Like Growth Factor I
  • Receptor, IGF Type 1