Insulin-like growth factor 1 signaling in human gastrointestinal carcinoid tumor cells

Academic Article


  • Insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1) is an autocrine regulator of carcinoid tumors. Blockade of IGF-1 signaling has been proposed as a therapeutic target in the treatment of patients with carcinoid syndrome. We hypothesized that the induction of parallel raf-1/MEK1 pathways will block IGF-1-mediated chromogranin A (CgA) maintenance. Human gastrointestinal carcinoid tumor cells (BON) were treated with IGF-1 (0-500 ng/mL). Raf-1/MEK1 activation was achieved with an estrogen-inducible raf-1 vector that was transduced into BON cells. Activation of IGF-1/raf-1 pathways was determined by phosphorylation of downstream targets p70s6 and ERK1/2. The secreted and intercellular levels of CgA were measured in conditioned media and whole cell extracts by Western and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay analysis. IGF-1 and raf-1 pathways were activated successfully in BON cells, as shown by high levels of phosphorylated p70s6 and phosphorylated ERK1/2, respectively. Treatment of BON cells with IGF-1 stimulated the release of CgA, while high intracellular CgA levels were maintained. The activation of raf-1/MEK1 reversed the effect of IGF-1 treatment by the depletion of intracellular CgA. The induction of the raf-1/MEK1 pathway blocks IGF-1-mediated intracellular neuroendocrine hormone regulation. Therefore, raf-1/MEK1 activation may be a viable method to block IGF-1-mediated cellular effects and serve as a therapeutic target in gastrointestinal carcinoid tumors.
  • Published In

  • Surgery  Journal
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Van Gompel JJ; Chen H
  • Start Page

  • 1297
  • End Page

  • 1302
  • Volume

  • 136
  • Issue

  • 6