Insulin-dependent diabetes can be associated with low insulin-like growth factor-I (IGF-I) levels despite normal or even high GH secretion. The basis of the diabetic abnormalities in GH-IGF dynamics that contribute to insulin resistance and impaired fuel metabolism are not well understood. To further investigate these matters, this study evaluated baseline IGF system parameters and responses to recombinant human IGF-I in four diabetic adolescents and six pubertal stage-matched controls. Spontaneous overnight and arginine-stimulated GH secretion, insulin, IGF-I, IGF-II, IGF-binding protein-1 (IGFBP-1), and IGFBP-3 levels were measured before, during, and after daily 10-h sc infusions of saline or IGF-I (20 μg/kg.h). Baseline overnight GH secretion and IGFBP-1 and -3 levels were not significantly different in the two groups, but IGF-I levels were significantly lower and IGF-II levels were higher in diabetic subjects. IGF-I infusion produced a 3-fold increase in serum IGF-I levels and a reciprocal profound reduction in IGF-II levels in both groups. IGFBP-1 levels increased dramatically in diabetics and modestly in normal subjects in response to IGF-I infusion, but IGFBP-3 levels were not significantly altered. Spontaneous overnight and arginine-stimulated GH secretion were suppressed by about 50% in both groups after IGF-I infusion. Insulin requirements were substantially reduced in diabetics receiving IGF-I, and insulin secretion was suppressed in normal subjects, with no evidence of a change in insulin half-life. Blood glucose remained stable in both groups throughout saline and IGF-I infusions, and no hypoglycemia or other adverse effect occurred during IGF-I infusions. Further studies are necessary to determine whether the addition of IGF-I to insulin replacement therapy may stably reduce the insulin requirement, maintain normal GH levels, and perhaps achieve better metabolic and anabolic balance in the treatment of insulin-dependent diabetes.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
- Clinical Biochemistry
- Biochemistry, medical