Insulin-like Growth Factor-1 and the cardiovascular system

Hippokratia 2006, 10(2):68-74

G Efstratiadis, G Tsiaousis, Ch Manes, D Karagianni, A Giannakou-Darda
Renal Dpr, Hippokratio General Hospital, Thessaloniki, Greece
Diabetes Unit, “G. Papageorgiou” General Hospital, Thessaloniki, Greece
Immunology Dpt, “G. Papageorgiou” General Hospital, Thessaloniki, Greece


The insulin-like growth factor -1 axis has been extensively studied at the molecular level, where IGF-1 seems to play a protective role against atherosclerosis and insulin resistance. Thus, low levels of IGF-1 in healthy populations have been prospectively associated with increased occurrence of cardiovascular disease and diabetes mellitus. In diabetic patients, IGF-1 concentrations appear reduced, probably contributing in part to the elevated cardiovascular morbidity of this group of patients. Herein we review the experimental research that has elucidated the molecular actions of IGF-1, as well as the relevant clinical studies, confirmatory or not of the above. Whether IGF-1 can play a role in cardiovascular risk stratification is discussed.

Keywords: insulin-like growth factor-1, type 2 diabetes mellitus, metabolic syndrome, cardiovascular disease

Correspoding author: Efstratiadis G, e-mail: