Exp Clin Endocrinol Diabetes 2007; 115(4): 232-239
DOI: 10.1055/s-2007-970576

© J. A. Barth Verlag in Georg Thieme Verlag KG · Stuttgart · New York

The Divergent Effect of Insulin-Like Growth Factor Binding Protein (IGFBP) - 1 on IGF-induced Steroidogenesis in Bovine Adrenocortical Cells is not due to its Phosphorylation Status

C. Fottner 1 , G. Spöttl 2 , M. M. Weber 1
  • 1Schwerpunkt Endokrinologie und Stoffwechselerkrankungen, I. Medizinische Klinik und Poliklinik der Johannes Gutenberg Universität Mainz
  • 2Medizinische Klinik II, Klinikum Grosshadern, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München, Germany
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received 30. 7. 2006 final decision 6. 9. 2006

accepted 6. 9. 2006

03. Mai 2007 (online)


In previous studies we have shown that insulin-like growth factor (IGF)-II stimulates basal as well as ACTH-induced cortisol secretion from bovine adrenocortical cells more potently than IGF-I. The steroidogenic effect of both, IGF-I and IGF-II, is mediated through the IGF-I receptor and modified by locally produced IGF binding proteins. Further studies demonstrate that bovine adrenocortical cells do synthesize IGFBP-1 to -4 and that their secretion is regulated differentially by IGFs and ACTH. Since IGFBP-1 selectively is induced 3- to 4- fold by ACTH, the aim of the following studies was to evaluate the effect of IGFBP-1 on IGF-induced cortisol secretion from bovine adrenocortical cells in primary culture. Coincubation of bovine adrenocortical cells with purified IGFBP-1 (30 nM) induced a time - and dose-dependent potentiating effect (38±2%) on IGF-I-stimulated (6.5 nM) cortisol-secretion, wheras the IGF-II induced steroidogenic effect was inhibited (40±3%) by IGFBP-1. Similar results were found when bovine adrenocortical cells were preincubated with IGFBP-1 before stimulation experiments with IGFs were performed. In order to evaluate the influence of different phosphorylation states of IGFBP-1 on the steroidogenic effect of IGF-I and IGF-II and on the affinity to IGFs, a highly phosphorylated (pIGFBP-1) and a dephosphorylated isoform (dIGFBP-1) of IGFBP-1 have been separated by anion exchange chromatography for further incubation experiments and binding studies. No different effects on IGF-I or IGF-II-induced steroidogenesis were observed when a highly phosphorylated IGFBP-1 isoform was used, compared to the dephosphorylated IGFBP-1 isoforms. In binding studies IGFBP-1 did show high affinity binding for IGF-I with a calculated association constant (Ka) of 2,17×109 M-1. Similar association constants were calculated for dIGFBP-1 and pIGFBP-1 (1,93×109 M-1 and 2,67×109 M-1 respectively) and no difference in binding capacity was observed when IGF-II was used as ligand. In Conclusion, these results demonstrate that in bovine adrenocortical cells IGFBP-1 time- and dose-dependently inhibits the steroidogenic effect of IGF-II and stimulates the effect of IGF-I. The observed modulatory effect of IGFBP-1 is independent of the mode of incubation and its phosphorylation status. The previously observed stronger steroidogenic potency of IGF-II in bovine adrenocortical cells therefore can not be explained by an interaction with IGFBP-1. The mechanisms by which IGFBP-1 divergently regulates the steroidogenic effect of IGF-I and IGF-II remain unclear at present and further investigation is necessary to elucidate the mechanisms by which IGFBP-1 modulates IGF action in the adult adrenal gland.


1 Supported by DFG Grant WE 1356/4-2 (to M.M.W.)


C. Fottner

Schwerpunkt Endokrinologie und Stoffwechselerkrankungen

I. Medizinische Klinik und Poliklinik

Johannes Gutenberg Universität Mainz

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