The insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF1) and its binding protein IGFBP3 (insulin-like growth factor binding protein 3) play a pivotal role during the growth and development of tissues. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the influence of anthracycline- and taxane-containing adjuvant chemotherapy in breast cancer patients on the circulating plasma levels of IGF1 and its main binding protein, IGFBP3. This investigation was part of a prospective randomized phase III study in which breast cancer patients were treated with either conventional or dose-intensified adjuvant chemotherapy. The factors were quantified in the plasma of 151 patients with a commercially available sandwich enzyme immunoassay. Before therapy, both parameters were within the normal range in most patients (n=145 and n=144). After therapy, both factors had increased significantly by 29% (IGF1) and 19% (IGFBP3), with the highest increase being observed in the dose-intensified group. Correlations with patient and tumor characteristics revealed a relatively higher increase in both parameters in premenopausal patients, patients with lower-grade tumors, more positive lymph nodes, larger tumor volume, and positive hormone receptor status. No correlation was found with the HER2 expression of the tumors.