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J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 1992 Sep;75(3):762-7.

The effect of anorexia nervosa and refeeding on growth hormone-binding protein, the insulin-like growth factors (IGFs), and the IGF-binding proteins.

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  • 1Developmental Endocrinology Branch, National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland 20892.


We studied the relationship of serum insulin-like growth factor-I (IGF-I), IGF-II, the IGF-binding proteins IGFBP-1, IGFBP-2, and IGFBP-3, and GH-binding protein (GHBP; which is postulated to be derived from the extracellular portion of the GH receptor) in normal volunteers and patients with anorexia nervosa before and after a refeeding program. Serum GHBP, IGF-I, and IGFBP-3 were all significantly decreased in low weight patients with anorexia nervosa and returned to nearly normal levels with refeeding. Fasting serum GH and serum IGFBP-1 and IGFBP-2 were significantly increased in low weight patients with anorexia nervosa and also returned to nearly normal levels with refeeding. Serum IGF-II was 27% lower in the low weight group than in normal subjects, but this difference was not statistically significant. Both serum IGF-I and IGF-II were positively correlated with serum IGFBP-3 and negatively correlated with serum IGFBP-1 and IGFBP-2. These data are consistent with the hypothesis that nutritional deprivation alters the GH-IGF axis by down-regulation of the GH receptor or its postreceptor mechanisms, and that this effect is reversible with refeeding.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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