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IGF-1 and Cancer

A large body of clinical trials suggests that IGF-1 has anti-cancer properties. In one of the largest studies ever conducted on IGF-1 and cancer, a long-term follow-up surveillance data involving 13,581 patients diagnosed with common cancers who are treated with IGF-1, did not show any increase in the risk of disease recurrence or death in cancer survivors. [257] In another large study by Swerdlow et al., GH and IGF-1 treatment in patients with brain tumors did not increase the risk of recurrence. [258] Data from the Childhood Cancer Survivor Study (CCSS) are also consistent with the finding that IGF-1 and GH administration do not increase risk of disease recurrence in patients with primary brain tumors and acute leukemia. [259] Furthermore, data from the two largest international databases and surveillance studies involving 86,000 patients on GH and IGF-1 therapy have shown no significant increase in cancer incidence. [260] In another study, researchers revealed that GH and IGF-1 levels approximately 10% that of normal showed almost complete growth suppression of transplanted human breast cancer cells. [261] Finally, there is compelling evidence that IGF-1 regulates hematopoiesis, a process that gives rise to all the other blood cells including neutrophils, macrophages, cytotoxic natural killer cells, and granulocytes – all of which helps protect the body against disease-causing microorganisms such as cancer cells. [262] Also, IGF-1 reduces inflammation [263] and blood sugar. It is a well-known fact that long-term inflammation [264-272] and elevated blood sugar levels [273-280] are risk factors that feed cancer growth or development. In addition, studies show that the anti-tumor properties of IGF-1 can be attributed to its ability to enhance natural killer cell activity of the immune system. [281-283]

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