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Oncogene. 1999 Mar 11;18(10):1827-36.

Anti-apoptotic signaling of the IGF-I receptor in fibroblasts following loss of matrix adhesion.

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Kimmel Cancer Center, Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19107, USA.


The type 1 insulin-like growth factor receptor (IGF-IR) is known to protect cells from a variety of apoptotic injuries. In several instances, the anti-apoptotic effect of the wild type IGF-IR is more evident under conditions of anchorage-independence than in cells in monolayer cultures. We have investigated IGF-IR signaling in cells in anoikis, a form of apoptosis that occurs when cells are denied attachment to the extra-cellular matrix. IGF-I protects mouse embryo fibroblasts (MEF) from anoikis caused by withdrawal of growth factors. Survival is dependent on the concentration of IGF-I and a sufficient number of functional IGF-I receptors. In this model, IGF-I protection correlates best with ras activation and cell-to-cell aggregation, while PI3-kinase, Akt and MAP kinases seem to play a lesser, alternative role.

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