The growth factor: IGF-1

By | December 31, 2007

IGF-1 is an abbreviation for Insulin-like Growth Factor 1. Sometimes, it’s called Somatomedin C. The measurement of IGF-1 has previously been taken to indicate the level of HGH in the body. If your IGF-1 levels are high, then that means your HGH levels are high, and vice versa.

How does IGF-1 come about?

This protein hormone is basically a byproduct of HGH. Structurally wise, it’s about the same as insulin, with 70 amino acids. That’s not even half as large as the Human Growth Hormone, which consists of 191 amino acids. The liver produces IGF-1 from HGH, and it is though IGF-1 that you get to experience the beneficial effects of HGH.

With all the focus on HGH, IGF-1 has remained in the shadows of medical research, and (as of Jan, 2008) there was only one company that was approved to manufacture IGF-1. Which doesn’t really make sense to me, since IGF-1 has most, if not all the benefits of HGH, but without the pituitary gland playing a role. Many clinical studies seem to indicate that IGF-1 is a very good HGH substitute, because it’s the end product.

IGF-1 an effective treatment for insulin deficiency or diabetes?

IGF-1 has many similarities to insulin, which may indicate the reason behind its effectiveness in treating diabetes. Although it does not mean that you can live without having enough insulin in your body, IGF-1 does help diabetics by improving their blood sugar levels.

Interpreting low IGF-1 levels?

Low levels of IGF-1 in the body could mean that the number of HGH recepters in the body are pretty much scarce. Sometimes genetic mutations in the receptors make a person insensitive to HGH treatment. One such disease is called Laron syndrom. It is not a lack of HGH, but rather a genetic defect in the protein receptor for HGH, which leads to reduced IGF-1 production, and consequentially, symptoms resembling HGH deficiency.