Local insulin-like growth factor I prevents sepsis-induced muscle atrophy

Gerald Nystrom, Anne Pruznak, Danuta Huber, Robert A. Frost, Charles H. Lang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

47 Scopus citations


The present study tests the hypotheses that local bioavailability of insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I) is capable of regulating muscle protein balance and that muscle-directed IGF-I can selectively maintain muscle mass during bacterial infection. Initial studies in C57BL/6 mice demonstrated that increasing or decreasing bioavailable IGF-I within muscle by local administration of either Leu24 Ala31 IGF-I or IGF binding protein 1, respectively, produced proportional changes in surrogate markers (eg, phosphorylation of 4E-BP1 and S6K1) of protein synthesis. We next examined the ability of a sustained local administration of IGF-I to prevent sepsis-induced muscle atrophy over a 5-day period. At the time of cecal ligation and puncture or sham surgery, mice had a time-release pellet containing IGF-I implanted next to the gastrocnemius and a placebo pellet placed in the contralateral limb. Data indicated that IGF-I released locally only affected the adjacent muscle and was not released into the circulation. Gastrocnemius from septic mice containing the placebo pellet was atrophied and had a reduced IGF-I protein content. In contrast, locally directed IGF-I increased IGF-I protein within adjacent muscle to basal control levels. This change was associated with a proportional increase in muscle weight and protein, as well as increased phosphorylation of 4E-BP1 and the redistribution of eIF4E from the inactive eIF4E{bullet operator}4EBP1 complex to the active eIF4E{bullet operator}eIF4G complex. Local IGF-I also prevented the sepsis-induced increase in atrogin-1 messenger RNA in the exposed muscle. Finally, local IGF-I prevented the sepsis-induced increase in muscle interleukin-6 messenger RNA. Thus, muscle-directed IGF-I attenuates the sepsis-induced atrophic response apparently by increasing muscle protein synthesis and potentially decreasing proteolysis. Collectively, our data suggest that agents that increase the bioavailability of IGF-I within muscle per se might be effective in ameliorating the sepsis-induced loss of muscle mass without having undesirable effects on metabolic processes in distant organs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)787-797
Number of pages11
JournalMetabolism: Clinical and Experimental
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2009

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Endocrinology


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