Insulin-like growth factor-1 induces phosphorylation of PI3K-Akt/PKB to potentiate proliferation of smooth muscle cells in human saphenous vein

G. Jia, A. K. Mitra, D. M. Gangahar, Devendra K. Agrawal

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27 Scopus citations


Coronary revascularization by coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) is recommended in patients with recurrent myocardial ischemia. However, the long-term results of CABG using saphenous vein (SV) graft, compared to internal mammary artery (IMA) graft, have not been satisfactory. The SV graft failure is due to the development of intimal hyperplasia, a process characterized by abnormal migration and proliferation of smooth muscle cells (SMCs) in the intimal layer of the vein graft. Insulin growth factor 1 (IGF-1) is a major mitogenic growth factor released at the site of the shear stress-induced graft injury. This study, for the first time, compares the extent of IGF-1-PI3K-Akt activation in isolated human bypass graft conduits. Human SV and IMA vessels were collected and SMCs isolated and cultured. In cultured SMCs, effect of IGF-1 was examined on total and phosphorylated PI3K, Akt and IGF-1R by Western blot analysis. Cell proliferation was measured using BrdU ELISA. There was no significant difference in the basal expression of phosphorylated PI3K, Akt and IGF-1R in SV and IMA SMCs from human bypass conduits. However, we observed an upregulation of IGF-1 receptors in the SV SMCs in response to IGF-1 stimulation with no effect in IMA SMCs. Furthermore, the immunoblotting and cellular activation of signaling ELISA (CASE) assay demonstrated a significantly higher activity of both PI3K and Akt in IGF-1-stimulated SV SMCs than IMA. This was inhibited by an IGF-1R blocking antibody. IGF-1 induced proliferation in both SV and IMA SMCs was inhibited by a PI3K inhibitor, wortmannin. These data demonstrate differential activity of IGF-1-induced PI3K-Akt activation, which was quantitatively and temporally greater in SV SMCs than in the IMA. This, at least in part, could explain the greater propensity of the SV conduits than the IMA to undergo intimal hyperplasia following CABG.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)20-26
Number of pages7
JournalExperimental and Molecular Pathology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Aug 2010

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine


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