Resistance to multikinase inhibitor actions mediated by insulin like growth factor-1

Catia Lippolis, Maria Grazia Refolo, Rosalba D'Alessandro, Nicola Carella, Caterina Messa, Aldo Cavallini, Brian Irving Carr

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Blood platelet numbers are correlated with growth and aggressiveness of several tumor types, including hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). We previously found that platelet lysates (hPLs) both stimulated HCC cell growth and migration, and antagonized the growth-inhibitory and apoptotic effects of Regorafenib, multikinase growth inhibitor, on HCC cell lines. We evaluated the effects of human insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF1), a mitogen contained in platelets, on the Regorafenib-mediated growth inhibition. Methods: An Elisa kit was used to evaluate hPL IGF1 concentrations. The effects of IGF1 on cell proliferation were assessed with MTT assay and analysis of cell cycle progression. Apoptosis assays, scratch assay and Transwell assay were performed to measure apoptosis, cell migration and invasion respectively. Western blots were performed by standard protocols. Results: IGF1 antagonized growth inhibition exerted by Regorafenib on HCC cell lines. Moreover the mitogen blocked Regorafenib-induced apoptosis and decreased the rate of cell migration and invasion. The IGF1 effects were in turn antagonized by actions of a potent IGF1 receptor inhibitor, GSK1838705A, showing that the IGF1 receptor was involved in the mechanisms of IGF1-mediated blocking of Regorafenib action. GSK1838705A also partially blocked the effects of hPLs in antagonizing Regorafenib-mediated growth inhibition, showing that IGF1 was an important component of hPL actions. Conclusions: These results show that IGF1 antagonized Regorafenib-mediated growth, migration and invasion inhibition, as well as the drug-mediated induction of apoptosis in HCC cells and reinforce the idea that microenvironmental factors can influence cancer drug actions.

Original languageEnglish
Article number90
JournalJournal of Experimental and Clinical Cancer Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2 2015


  • HCC cells
  • Insulin growth factor
  • Platelets
  • Regorafenib

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology


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