Increased expression of the insulin-like growth factor I receptor gene, IGF1R in Wilms tumor is correlated with modulation of IGF1R promoter activity by the WT1 Wilms tumor gene product

H. Werner, G. G. Re, I. A. Drummond, V. P. Sukhatme, F. J. Rauscher, D. A. Sens, A. J. Garvin, D. LeRoith, C. T. Roberts

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    Wilms tumor is a pediatric neoplasm that arises from the metanephric blastema. The expression of the gene encoding insulin-like growth factor II (IGF-II) is often elevated in these tumors. Since many of the actions of IGF- II are mediated through activation of the IGF-I receptor (IGF-IR), we have measured the levels of IGF-IR mRNA in normal kidney and in Wilms tumor samples using solution hybridization/RNase protection assays. IGF-IR mRNA levels in the tumors were 5.8-fold higher than in adjacent normal kidney tissue. Among the tumors themselves, the levels of IGF-IR mRNA in those containing heterologous stromal elements were 2-fold higher (P < 0.01) than in tumors without these elements. IGF-IR gene (designated IGF1R) expression in the tumors was inversely correlated with the expression of the Wilms tumor suppressor gene WT1, whose inactivation appears to be a key step in the etiology of Wilms tumor. Cotransfection of Chinese hamster ovary cells with rat and human IGF-IR gene promoter constructs driving luciferase reporter genes and with WT1 expression vectors showed that the active WT1 gene product represses IGF-IR promoter activity in a dose-dependent manner. These results suggest that underexpression, deletion, or mutation of WT1 may result in increased expression of the IGF-IR, whose activation by IGF-II may be an important aspect of the biology of Wilms tumor.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)5828-5832
    Number of pages5
    JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
    Issue number12
    StatePublished - Jan 1 1993


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