Horm Metab Res 1999; 31(6): 380-384
DOI: 10.1055/s-2007-978759
Originals Clinical

© Georg Thieme Verlag Stuttgart · New York

Expression of Growth Hormone and Insulin-Like Growth Factor in the Immune System of Children

Y. Yang, L. Guo, L. Ma, X. Liu
  • Pediatrics Institute of Children's Hospital, Shanghai Medical University, Shanghai, P R China
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Publication History



Publication Date:
20 April 2007 (online)

Our objective was to study the effect of the growth hormone - insulin-like growth factor axis on the development of the immune system in children. We used radio receptor analysis, dot blot, in situ hybridization, and immunohistochemical techniques to determine the expression and distribution of growth hormone and growth hormone receptors, insulin-like growth factors, receptors and binding proteins in the thymus, lymph nodes and peripheral blood lymphocytes of children and adults. Our results showed that almost all components of the growth hormone-insulin-like growth factor axis were expressed in immune organs and cells, but the levels of expression varied. Growth hormone, insulin-like growth factor I, and insulin-like growth factor-binding proteins 1 - 6 were produced by immune cells in autocrine or paracrine ways. The expression of growth hormone receptors on peripheral blood lymphocytes was to be age-related. The growth hormone-insulin-like growth factor axis may help regulate the development and function of the immune system in children.