Purpose: Insulin-like growth factor (IGF)-I and IGF-II stimulate neoplastic cell growth and inhibit apoptosis, whereas IGF-binding protein-3 (IGFBP-3) inhibits the bioavailability of IGF-I and has independent proapoptotic activity. We examined the influence of baseline plasma levels of IGF-I, IGF-II, IGFBP-3, and C-peptide on outcome among patients receiving first-line chemotherapy for metastatic colorectal cancer. Experimental Design:The plasma levels of IGF-I, IGF-II, IGFBP-3, and C-peptide as well as data on prognostic factors and body size were measured at baseline among 527 patients participating in a randomized trial of first-line chemotherapy for metastatic colorectal cancer. Results: Higher baseline plasma IGFBP-3 levels were associated with a significantly greater chemotherapy response rate (P = 0.03) after adjusting for other prognostic factors, whereas neither IGF-I nor IGF-II levels significantly predicted tumor response. Higher levels of IGF-I, IGF-II, and IGFBP-3 were all univariately associated with improved overall survival (P = 0.0001 for all). In a model that mutually adjusted for IGF-I and IGFBP-3, as well as other prognostic factors, increasing baseline-circulating IGFBP-3 was associated with a significantly longer time to tumor progression (P = 0.03), whereas circulating IGF-I was not associated with disease progression (P = 0.95). Levels of C-peptide were not associated with any measure of patient outcome. Conclusion: Among colorectal cancer patients receiving first-line chemotherapy, increasing levels of IGFBP-3, an endogenous antagonist to IGF-I, are associated with an improved objective treatment response and a prolonged time to cancer progression. The IGF pathway may represent an important target for future treatment strategies.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research