Differential expression of IGFBPs in Laron syndrome-derived lymphoblastoid cell lines: Potential correlation with reduced cancer incidence

Lina Somri, Rive Sarfstein, Lena Lapkina-Gendler, Karthik Nagaraj, Zvi Laron, Leon A. Bach, Haim Werner*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Laron syndrome (LS), or primary growth hormone (GH) insensitivity, is a growth disorder that results from mutation of the GH-receptor (GHR) gene leading to congenital insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) deficiency. Recent epidemiological studies have shown that LS patients are protected from cancer development. Genome-wide profiling identified genes and signaling pathways that are differentially represented in LS patients, and that may contribute to cancer protection. The present study was aimed at evaluating the hypothesis that IGF binding proteins (IGFBPs) are differentially expressed in LS, most probably as a result of low circulating levels of IGF-1. Furthermore, we postulated that IGFBPs might be differentially regulated by oxidative stress in this condition and, therefore, may contribute to cancer evasion. Our results show that IGFBP-3, which is predominantly protective, was highly expressed in LS-derived lymphoblastoid cells in comparison to control cells from the same ethnic group. On the other hand, levels of IGFBP-2, -4, -5, and -6 were diminished in LS patients, as demonstrated by RQ-PCR, Western immunoblots and confocal immunofluorescence. In addition, our data provide evidence for a pattern of IGFBP response to H2O2 treatment that might be associated with distinct expression of apoptosis markers (BCL2, pro-caspase-9, pro-caspase-3) in LS. In summary, differential expression of specific IGFBPs in LS might be correlated with cellular mechanisms underlying cancer protection and, probably, additional phenotypes due to congenital IGF-1 deficiency.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6-12
Number of pages7
JournalGrowth Hormone and IGF Research
StatePublished - Apr 2018


FundersFunder number
Sackler Faculty of Medicine, Tel Aviv University
Canadian Friends of Tel Aviv University
United States-Israel Binational Science Foundation2013282


    • Cancer protection
    • Congenital IGF-1 deficiency
    • IGF binding protein (IGFBP)
    • Insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1)
    • Laron syndrome


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