Effects of insulin-like growth factor-binding protein-4 (IGFBP-4) on proliferation, colony formation, and cell migration were assessed in IGF-sensitive and -insensitive colorectal cancer cell lines. In IGF-insensitive Isreco-1 cells, overexpression of IGFBP-4 reduced colony formation but not cell proliferation and migration, whereas exogenous IGF-II had no effect. In IGF-dependent LS1034 cells, IGFBP-4 inhibited all parameters of growth tested, whereas IGF-II partially restored reduced proliferation and cell migration only. In Isreco-2 cells, which lack endogenous IGF expression but are IGF sensitive, colony formation was also reduced by IGFBP-4. Therefore, specific parameters of malignant progression of colon carcinoma cells are distinctly affected by IGF-dependent and IGF-independent effects of IGFBP-4.