Circulating insulin-like growth factor binding proteins in fish: Their identities and physiological regulation.
Insulin-like growth factor (IGF) binding protein-1 (IGFBP-1) gene transcription is known to be inhibited by insulin in vivo and in vitro. Levels of IGFBP-1 typically rise during fasting but also rise after acute hypoglycemia, including that induced by insulin, through an unknown mechanism that may involve counterregulatory hormones such as cortisol. To study the regulation of IGFBP-1 secretion during fasting, we measured IGFBP-1, insulin, cortisol, GH, and glucose during the course of standardized fasting studies in a total of 21 children. The fasting studies lasted 13-32 h and were terminated for a whole-blood glucose concentration of less than 50 mg/dL (2.8 mmol). Of the children studied, 9 children had no disorder, 8 had ketotic hypoglycemia, 2 had isolated GH deficiency, and 2 had fatty acid oxidation disorders. During fasting, IGFBP-1 rose above the mean baseline levels of 28+/-5 ng/mL to a mean level+/-SEM of 336+/-59 ng/mL at the time of hypoglycemia (P=0.001). IGFBP-1 was strongly associated with serum insulin and cortisol levels over the entire course of fasting (P < 0.0001)). The interaction of the 2 hormones across time was also strongly significant (P < 0.0001). There was no statistically significant association between IGFBP-1 and GH or glucose. At the time of hypoglycemia, insulin levels were suppressed to 1.7 microU/mL or less, and there was no correlation between IGFBP-1 levels at the end of fasting and final insulin level. In contrast, cortisol levels correlated with IGFBP-1 in the final hypoglycemic sample (r=0.56, P < 0.01). Partial correlation analysis revealed that the relationship between IGFBP-1 and cortisol was unchanged when the data was controlled for insulin levels. These data show that insulin and cortisol both regulate IGFBP-1 secretion during fasting; the effects of insulin and cortisol are strong during the course of fasting. Significant hypoglycemia stimulates a further rise in IGFBP-1, which seems to be regulated, in part, by cortisol. The cortisol-induced rise in IGFBP-1 during fasting and during hypoglycemia potentially serves to prevent the hypoglycemic effects of free IGFs.