IGF-I is considered to be one of the most important growth factors during puberty. Information concerning its correlation to thyroid hormones (T3, T4), adrenal and sex steroids is limited to puberty and the elderly. The presented study included 455 subjects (among them 259 children) ranging in age from newborn to 100 years. Serum IGF-I concentrations increase from childhood to the end of puberty (2 years earlier in girls). There are close positive correlations between IGF-I concentrations and age, height and weight and between IGF-I and estradiol or testosterone concentration in girls and boys respectively, and the DHEA-S level in boys during puberty. Correlations also exist with T3, aldosterone and 17 OH-progesterone in boys and girls in the pubertal stages I-V and with T4 in stages I-IV. Compared to 20-30 year-old subjects IGF-I concentrations amounted to 59% after 60 years, 43% in men and 54% in women after 70 years and 29% after 90 years. It is suggested that increasing adrenal DHEA-S concentrations stimulate IGF-I synthesis and by means of gonadal steroidogenesis, increase the pubertal GH secretion and the further pubertal IGF-I increase. The low IGF-I concentrations in patients > 60 years reflect the more catabolic metabolism of the elderly.