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Exp Cell Res. 1997 Aug 25;235(1):287-94.

Effect of the insulin-like growth factor I receptor on ionizing radiation-induced cell death in mouse embryo fibroblasts.

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Faculty of Dentistry, Tokyo Medical and Dental University, Yushima 1-5-45, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo, 113, Japan.


We have investigated the effect of the insulin-like growth factor I receptor (IGF-IR) on ionizing radiation (IR)-induced cell death using the following two mouse embryo fibroblast cell lines: (i) R- cells with a null mutation of the IGF-IR gene, therefore expressing no endogenous IGF-IR; (ii) R+ cells derived from R- cells, a stable transfectant overexpressing the human IGF-IR. Numbers of R- cells began to detach from dishes and float into the medium about 48 h after 10 Gy of X-irradiation. Internucleosomal DNA fragmentation detected by agarose gel electrophoresis, which is characteristic of apoptosis, was observed in the floating R- cells, but not in the attached cells. Unexpectedly, morphological analysis of the floating cells 72 h after irradiation revealed that only about half of them showed apoptotic death and the rest showed a nonapoptotic, presumably necrotic, one. On the other hand, R+ cells retained more than 90% viability even 4 days after irradiation, and very few floating cells were observed. The G2 arrest was induced in both cell lines following irradiation and G2/M fractions similarly returned to normal levels by around 20 h after irradiation, indicating that the cell death which appeared thereafter in R- cells is mediated through mitosis. Significant induction of p53 following irradiation was not detected by Western blot analysis in either R- or R+ cells. Collectively, these results demonstrate that signal transduction pathways originating from the IGF-IR may be involved in preventing IR-induced apoptosis and necrosis without affecting cell cycle arrest or p53 pathways.

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