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Jpn J Cancer Res. 2002 Nov;93(11):1187-94.

Insulin-like growth factor (IGF)-I, IGF-binding protein-3 and colorectal adenomas in Japanese men.

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  • 1Department of Preventive Medicine, Faculty of Medical Sciences, Kyushu University, Higashi-ku, Fukuoka 812-8582, Japan.


Several epidemiological studies have found that high levels of plasma insulin-like growth factor (IGF)-I and low levels of IGF-binding protein (IGFBP)-3 are related to an increased risk of colorectal cancer or late-stage adenomas. We examined the relation of body mass index, fasting and 2-h postload plasma glucose levels and plasma concentrations of IGF-I and IGFBP-3 to colorectal adenomas in middle-aged Japanese men. The study subjects comprised 157 cases of histologically diagnosed colorectal adenomas and 311 controls with normal colonoscopy or non-polyp benign lesions in a consecutive series of 803 men receiving a preretirement health examination at two hospitals of the Self Defense Forces (SDF). After adjustment for rank in the SDF, hospital, smoking and IGFBP-3, a statistically nonsignificant modest increase in the prevalence odds of colorectal adenomas was observed for the highest versus the lowest quartile level of IGF-I. The increase was slightly greater with further adjustment for 2-h glucose concentrations (adjusted odds ratio 1.8, 95% confidence interval 1.0-4.5, trend P=0.06). Men with high levels of IGFBP-3 showed only a minimal decrease in risk after adjustment for IGF-I. The association with IGF-I was less evident for advanced adenomas (>5 mm in size or tubulovillous/villous). Fasting and 2-h glucose and body mass index were more strongly positively associated with colorectal adenomas than IGF-I, especially with advanced adenomas, independently of IGF-I and IGFBP-3. The findings suggest that plasma IGF-I and IGFBP-3 may be involved in colorectal tumorigenesis regardless of the stage in growth of adenoma, but not as a mediator for the effects of being overweight or of hyperglycemia.

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