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Characterization of the insulin‐like growth factor axis and Wilms' tumour suppressor gene in hyperparathyroidism

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Genetic mutations and upregulation of growth factors are implicated in the pathogenesis of hyperparathyroidism. The aim of this study was to evaluate the role of Wilms' tumour suppressor gene (WT‐1) and the insulin‐like growth factor (IGF) axis in hyperparathyroidism.


The expression of WT‐1 and IGF components was examined by immunohistochemistry, reverse transcriptase–polymerase chain reaction and western immunoblotting in a panel of parathyroid specimens from both primary and secondary hyperparathyroidism. A human parathyroid cell culture model was established to examine the parathyroid response to IGF stimulation.


There was a significantly lower level of WT‐1 expression in parathyroid tumours than in normal parathyroid glands. Most tumours expressed IGF‐I and IGF‐II receptors and responded to IGF stimulation. Only IGF‐I was present in normal parathyroid glands, whereas IGF‐II was expressed exclusively in parathyroid tumours.


Abnormal expression of WT‐1 and the IGF axis may play a role in the pathogenesis of hyperparathyroidism. Copyright © 2007 British Journal of Surgery Society Ltd. Published by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: October 1, 2007

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