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Urology. 2001 Oct;58(4):614-8.

Plasma levels of IGF-1, IGF-2, and IGFBP-3 in white and African-American men at increased risk of prostate cancer.

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  • 1Department of Radiation Oncology, Fox Chase Cancer Center, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA.



To further investigate the relationship between the plasma levels of insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1), insulin-like growth factor-2 (IGF-2), insulin-like growth factor binding protein-3 (IGFBP-3), growth hormone, testosterone, and demographic factors, particularly race, within a group of men at increased risk of prostate cancer development.


Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays or an immunosorbent assay was used to quantitate the plasma levels of IGF-1, IGF-2, IGFBP-3, growth hormone, and testosterone. The study group consisted of 169 men (85 African-American, 84 white) aged 35 to 69 years, with no personal history of prostate cancer, but having at least one first-degree relative diagnosed with the disease, unless they were African-American. The relationships between the plasma levels and the categorical covariates were assessed using the nonparametric Wilcoxon test and between the continuous variables using Spearman's correlation coefficient.


The mean plasma levels of IGFBP-3 were significantly lower in African-American (2657 ng/mL) than in white (2965 ng/mL) men (P = 0.0062). The plasma levels of IGF-2 were also lower in the African-American (503.5 ng/mL) than in the white (549.1 ng/mL) men (P = 0.0084). Overall, the IGF-1 plasma levels correlated positively with the IGF-2, IGFBP-3, and growth hormone levels and the IGF-2 plasma levels correlated negatively with the testosterone levels.


Our results demonstrate that lower plasma levels of IGFBP-3 and IGF-2 are associated with race in a population of men at increased risk of developing prostate cancer. The ability of these markers to predict earlier disease onset is currently under investigation.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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