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Clin Nephrol. 1995 Jun;43(6):368-74.

Insulin-like growth factor-1 stimulates production of mesangial cell matrix components.

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Department of Medicine, University of Vermont College of Medicine, Burlington, USA.


Diabetic nephropathy is characterized by mesangial cell proliferation and expansion of the mesangial matrix. Insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) increases in the kidney early in experimental diabetes. The effect of IGF-1 on mesangial cell proliferation and synthesis of extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins was examined to test the hypothesis that IGF-1 stimulates mesangial cells to synthesize ECM proteins. ECM proteins were measured by immunoprecipitation after metabolic labeling of rat mesangial cells in culture. IGF-1 caused a 2.4-fold increase in mesangial cell proliferation as measured by 3H-thymidine incorporation. IGF-1 caused an increase in cellular laminin, fibronectin and type IV collagen, 46.8 +/- 15.4%, 31.3 +/- 11.4%, and 27.7 +/- 12.6% increase respectively compared to control cells. IGF-1 did not effect cellular type 1 collagen, decrease of 8.2 +/- 8.7%. There was a trend toward increased total protein synthesis by IGF-1, 36.5 +/- 2.5%. In summary, IGF-1 stimulates ECM component production by mesangial cells. Thus, IGF-1 has the capacity to mediate the histologic changes characteristic of diabetic nephropathy.

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