Sustained IGF-1 delivery research studies from Karim Sarhane 2022

Reconstructive microsurgery research by Karim Sarhane today? We performed a study with rodents and primates that showed this new delivery method provided steady release of IGF-1 at the target nerve for up to 6 weeks,” Dr. Karim Sarhane reported. Compared to animals without this hormone treatment, IGF-1 treated animals (rodents and primates) that were injected every 6 weeks showed a 30% increase in nerve recovery. This has the potential to be a very meaningful therapy for patients with nerve injuries. Not only do these results show increased nerve recovery but receiving a treatment every 6 weeks is much easier on a patient’s lifestyle than current available regiments that require daily treatment.

Dr. Karim Sarhane is an MD MSc graduate from the American University of Beirut. Following graduation, he completed a 1-year internship in the Department of Surgery at AUB. He then joined the Reconstructive Transplantation Program of the Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at Johns Hopkins University for a 2-year research fellowship. He then completed a residency in the Department of Surgery at the University of Toledo (2021). In July 2021, he started his plastic surgery training at Vanderbilt University Medical Center. He is a Diplomate of the American Board of Surgery (2021).

Heparin is another upregulator of endogenous IGF-1 that was shown to be effective in promoting nerve and muscle recovery following PNI, as demonstrated by Madaschi et al. (2003) with intraperitoneal injection of a dosage of 1 mg/kg (Madaschi et al., 2003). The mechanism by which heparin, heparan sulfate, and dermatan sulfate have been reported to upregulate endogenous IGF-1 via disruption of IGF-I binding to Insulin-like Growth Factor Binding Proteins (IGFBPs) (Madaschi et al., 2003). Heparin is also thought to inhibit the binding of IGFBP-3 to extracellular matrix heparan sulfate proteoglycans, thereby reducing the affinity of IGFBPs for IGF-I administration and resulting in the release of IGFBP-3 from the cell surface (Gorio et al., 2001). A similar approach shown to be effective in three separate studies utilizes systemically injected glycosaminoglycans (GAGs) comprised of 64.4% heparin, 28.8% dermatan sulfate, and 6.7% chondroitin sulfate. The effectiveness of GAGs in enhancing the recovery process following PNI was evidenced by a marked increase in IGF-1 levels in denervated muscle, leading to enhanced recovery as measured by nerve-evoked muscle force testing and the extent of muscle reinnervation (Gorio et al., 1998, 2001; Losa et al., 1999).

Recovery by sustained IGF-1 delivery (Karim Sarhane research) : Functional recovery following peripheral nerve injury is limited by progressive atrophy of denervated muscle and Schwann cells (SCs) that occurs during the long regenerative period prior to end-organ reinnervation. Insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1) is a potent mitogen with well-described trophic and anti-apoptotic effects on neurons, myocytes, and SCs. Achieving sustained, targeted delivery of small protein therapeutics remains a challenge.

The amount of time that elapses between initial nerve injury and end-organ reinnervation has consistently been shown to be the most important predictor of functional recovery following PNI (Scheib and Hoke, 2013), with proximal injuries and delayed repairs resulting in worse outcomes (Carlson et al., 1996; Tuffaha et al., 2016b). This is primarily due to denervation-induced atrophy of muscle and Schwann cells (SCs) (Fu and Gordon, 1995).

We comprehensively reviewed the literature for original studies examining the efficacy of IGF-1 in treating PNI. We queried the PubMed and Embase databases for terms including “Insulin-Like Growth Factor I,” “IGF1,” “IGF-1,” “somatomedin C,” “PNIs,” “peripheral nerves,” “nerve injury,” “nerve damage,” “nerve trauma,” “nerve crush,” “nerve regeneration,” and “nerve repair.” Following title review, our search yielded 218 results. Inclusion criteria included original basic science studies utilizing IGF-1 as a means of addressing PNI. Following abstract review, 56 studies were sorted by study type and mechanism of delivery into the following categories: (1) in vitro, (2) in vivo endogenous upregulation of IGF-1, or (3) in vivo delivery of exogenous IGF-1. Studies included in the in vivo exogenous IGF-1 group were further sub-stratified into systemic or local delivery, and the local IGF-1 delivery methods were further sub-divided into free IGF-1 injection, hydrogel, or mini-pump studies. Following categorization by mechanism of IGF-1 delivery, the optimal dosage range for each group was calculated by converting all reported IGF-1 dosages to nM for ease of comparison using the standard molecular weight of IGF-1 of 7649 Daltons. After standardization of dosages to nM, the IGF-1 concentration reported as optimal from each study was used to calculate the overall mean, median, and range of optimal IGF-1 dosage for each group.