Localization of binding sites for insulin-like growth factor-I (IGF-I) in the rat brain by quantitative autoradiography

Nancy J. Bohannon, Eric S. Corp, Barbara J. Wilcox, Dianne P. Figlewicz, Daniel M. Dorsa, Denis G. Baskin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

161 Scopus citations


In vitro quantitative autoradiography was used to localize IGF-I binding sites in rat brain. Slide-mounted sections of frozen rat brain were incubated in 0.01 nM 125I[Thr59]IGF-I, alone or mixed with 10 nM unlabeled [Thr59]IGF-I or insulin, for 22 h at 4 °C and apposed to LKB Ultrofilm. Measurement of labeled [Thr59]IGF-I binding by computer digital image analysis of the autoradiographic images indicated that high affinity IGF-I binding sites are widely distributed at discrete anatomical regions of the brain microarchitecture. The highest concentration of specific binding sites was in the choroid plexus of the lateral and third ventricles. Unlabeled porcine insulin was less potent than unlabeled IGF-I in competing for binding sites on brain slices. Regions of the olfactory, visual, and auditory, as well visceral and somatic sensory systems were labeled, in particular the glomerular layer of the olfactory bulb, the anterior olfactory nucleus, accessory olfactory bulb, primary olfactory cortex, lateral-dorsal geniculate, superior colliculus, medial geniculate, and the spinal trigeminal nucleus. High concentrations of IGF-I-specific binding sites were present throughout the thalamus and the hippocampus, (dentate gyrus, Ca1, Ca2, Ca3). The hypothalamus had moderate binding in the paraventricular, supraoptic, and suprachiasmatic nucleus. Highest binding in the hypothalamus was in the median eminence. The arcuate nucleus showed very low specific binding, approaching the levels found in optic chiasm and white matter regions. Layers II and VI of the cerebral cortex also had moderate IGF-I binding. The results suggest that the development and functions of brain sensory and neuroendocrine pathways may be regulated by IGF-I.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)205-213
Number of pages9
JournalBrain research
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 22 1988
Externally publishedYes


  • Brain
  • Insulin-like growth factor-1
  • Quantitative autoradiography
  • Rat
  • Receptor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Neuroscience
  • Molecular Biology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Developmental Biology


Dive into the research topics of 'Localization of binding sites for insulin-like growth factor-I (IGF-I) in the rat brain by quantitative autoradiography'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this