Effects of Insulin-Like Growth Factors on Chromaffin Cells

  • Mary K. Dahmer
  • Robert L. Perlman


In 1966, Levi-Montalcini and her colleagues reported that insulin stimulates RNA and lipid synthesis in sensory ganglia (Angeletti et al., 1966). Because these workers used high concentrations of insulin in their studies, the significance of their observations was not clear. The subsequent discovery of insulin-like growth factors (IGFs) and IGF receptors, and the recognition that high concentrations of insulin can activate IGF-I receptors, raised the possibility that the actions of insulin on sensory ganglia may have been due to the stimulation of IGF-I receptors in these ganglia. Other neural crest-derived cells may also be targets of IGF action. Wilson et al. (1985) have reported that high concentrations of insulin increase the content of opioid peptides and enhance catecholamine secretion in adrenal chromaffin cells; these actions of insulin may reflect a physiological role of IGF-I in the adrenal medulla. The finding of IGF mRNA (Han et al., 1987) and IGF-I like immunoreactivity (Hansson et al., 1988) in the adrenal gland suggests that IGF-I may function as an autocrine or paracrine regulatory factor in this tissue.


PC12 Cell Chromaffin Cell Adrenal Medulla Sensory Ganglion Catecholamine Secretion 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1989

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mary K. Dahmer
    • 1
  • Robert L. Perlman
    • 1
  1. 1.Departments of Pediatrics and Pharmacological and Physiological Sciences and the Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr. Mental Retardation Research CenterThe University of ChicagoChicagoUSA

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