, Volume 247, Issue 2, pp 241-247

Rapid axoplasmic transport of insulin-like growth factor I in the sciatic nerve of adult rats

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Summary

Somatomedin C (Sm-C; insulin-like growth factor I; IGF-I) is a polypeptide (Mr 7649), often dependent on growth hormone (GH), with trophic effects on several different tissues. Monospecific IGF-I antisera were used to investigate its localization in the sciatic nerve and corresponding nerve cells, as well as its possible axoplasmic transport in the adult rat. IGF-I-like immunoreactivity was demonstrated in anterior horn motor nerve cells in the spinal cord and in spinal- and autonomic ganglion nerve cells. Faint IGF-I immunoreactivity was under normal conditions observed in axons of the sciatic nerve and in the Schwann cells. Using crush technique, accumulation of IGF-I immunoreactivity was seen in dilated axons within 2 h, both proximal and distal to the crush. However, only a small fraction of the anterogradely transported IGF-I immunoreactive material could be demonstrated to be transported in retrograde direction. Colchicine injected proximal to a crush prevented accumulation of IGF-I immunoreactivity proximal to the crush, but not distal to it.

IGF-I-immunoreactive material is synthesized in the cell bodies of peripheral sensory and motor nerve cells. It is transported at rapid rates in the axoplasm of the sciatic nerve of adult rats both in anterograde and retrograde directions. We propose that axonally transported IGF-I may be released and exert trophic influence on innervated cells, tissues and organs.