The insulin-like growth factor (IGF) family of ligands, receptors, and binding proteins can regulate breast cancer cell proliferation in vitro, and interruption of these pathways inhibits IGF-mediated cell proliferation. If the IGF family members are key regulators of breast cancer growth and progression in vivo, we would expect their expression to be an indicator of the prognosis of the disease. Thus, measurement of IGF expression may provide an indicator of the growth effect within a tumor, and provide new targets for treatment of the disease. In this review we will summarize the data generated thus far indicating that IGF family members are indicators of prognosis of breast cancer, and that measurement of the whole IGF family in concert may provide useful information for treatment strategies of breast cancer.
- Breast cancer