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Insulin- like growth factor-binding protein action in bone tissue: A key role for pregnancy- associated plasma protein-A

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  • James Beattie, University of Leeds
  • ,
  • Hasanain Al-Khafaji, University of Leeds
  • ,
  • Pernille R. Noer
  • ,
  • Hanaa Esa Alkharobi, King Abdulaziz University
  • ,
  • Aishah Alhodhodi, University of Leeds
  • ,
  • Josephine Meade, University of Leeds
  • ,
  • Reem El-Gendy, University of Leeds, Suez Canal University
  • ,
  • Claus Oxvig

The insulin-like growth factor (IGF) axis is required for the differentiation, development, and maintenance of bone tissue. Accordingly, dysregulation of this axis is associated with various skeletal pathologies including growth abnormalities and compromised bone structure. It is becoming increasingly apparent that the action of the IGF axis must be viewed holistically taking into account not just the actions of the growth factors and receptors, but also the influence of soluble high affinity IGF binding proteins (IGFBPs).There is a recognition that IGFBPs exert IGF-dependent and IGF-independent effects in bone and other tissues and that an understanding of the mechanisms of action of IGFBPs and their regulation in the pericellular environment impact critically on tissue physiology. In this respect, a group of IGFBP proteinases (which may be considered as ancillary members of the IGF axis) play a crucial role in regulating IGFBP function. In this model, cleavage of IGFBPs by specific proteinases into fragments with lower affinity for growth factor(s) regulates the partition of IGFs between IGFBPs and cell surface IGF receptors. In this review, we examine the importance of IGFBP function in bone tissue with special emphasis on the role of pregnancy associated plasma protein-A (PAPP-A). We examine the function of PAPP-A primarily as an IGFBP-4 proteinase and present evidence that PAPP-A induced cleavage of IGFBP-4 is potentially a key regulatory step in bone metabolism. We also highlight some recent findings with regard to IGFBP-2 and IGFBP-5 (also PAPP-A substrates) function in bone tissue and briefly discuss the actions of the other three IGFBPs (-1, -3, and -6) in this tissue. Although our main focus will be in bone we will allude to IGFBP activity in other cells and tissues where appropriate.

Original languageEnglish
Article number31
JournalFrontiers in Endocrinology
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - 16 Feb 2018

    Research areas

  • Bone, Insulin-like growth factor-binding protein-4, Insulin-like growth factor-binding protein-5, Pregnancy-associated plasma protein-A, Proteolysis

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