Diverging antioxidative responses to IGF-1 in cultured human skin fibroblasts versus vascular endothelial cells

Rivka C. Stone, Soyeon Kim, Betsy J. Barnes, Abraham Aviv

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1) stimulates cell proliferation and is crucial for maintenance of somatic tissues. However, this effect is associated with the inhibition of FOXO transcription factors and downregulation of antioxidative enzymes. In this study, we compared the responses of primary dermal fibroblasts and human umbilical vein endothelial cells with IGF-1 treatment. We found that IGF-1 primarily downregulated enzymatic antioxidants in skin fibroblasts. However, human umbilical vein endothelial cells were protected from an IGF-1-mediated decrease in antioxidative capacity. Moreover, IGF-1 also activated endothelial nitric oxide synthase in human umbilical vein endothelial cells. These observations suggest a dichotomous role for IGF-1, which provides for growth and repair needs of the soma, while attenuating the effect of oxidative stress on the vasculature by activating endothelial nitric oxide synthase. This increases the production of nitric oxide, an antiproliferative and, under certain circumstances, an antioxidant agent. Findings could help clarify the role of IGF-1 in aging and longevity of lower organisms, short-lived mammals, and humans.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)939-946
Number of pages8
JournalJournals of Gerontology - Series A Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences
Volume67 A
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 2012

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Aging
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology


  • Insulin/IGF-1 signaling
  • Molecular biology of aging
  • Oxidative stress


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