The IGF axis and diabetes risk

Researchers analysed levels of four proteins in the ‘IGF axis’ in blood taken from 742 women in the Nurses’ Health Study who years later developed type 2 diabetes, as well as a similarly sized control group.

Each component of the IGF axis (IGF-1 and IGFBP-1, -2, and -3) had a significant, independent association with diabetes risk. Having high levels of IGFBP-1 was associated with a three-fold reduction in risk for diabetes; while having high levels of IGFBP-2 conferred more than a five-fold reduction in diabetes risk, compared to people with low IGFBP-2 levels.

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