Metformin, a well-tolerated drug prescribed for diabetics, may also protect against liver cancer, says a new study. Metformin increases the sensitivity of cells to insulin. It is one of the most widely used diabetes drugs.
The study, led by Geoffrey Girnun, assistant professor of biochemistry and molecular biology at the University Of Maryland School Of Medicine, looks at the effect of Metformin in cancer prevention and is one of the first to evaluate liver cancer.
He and his colleagues chemically induced liver tumours in mice. These mice taking Metformin displayed minimal tumour activity, while the control mice (not given Metformin) displayed significant tumour growth, said a university statement.
Girnun’s team also showed that Metformin prevented liver cancer in part by inhibiting lipid synthesis in the liver, a process known to promote cancer.
Another study in mice exposed to tobacco carcinogens shows that the drug can reduce the development of lung tumours by more than 70%, and results from a small clinical trial in Japan suggest it can reduce rates of colorectal tumours in humans. The National Cancer Institute is now organizing a clinical trial to test the drug in people who smoke, and other trials are testing it against breast and prostate cancer.
Well, this is good news for all those, who are unfortunate like me suffering from diabetes and taking Metformin daily. Hope, that it truly proves to be a good cancer preventive medicine. Amen!