Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Metformin may protect against liver cancer

Date:
March 31, 2012
Source:
American Association for Cancer Research (AACR)
Summary:
Metformin, a widely used, well-tolerated drug prescribed for patients with diabetes, may protect against liver cancer, according to a new study.

Metformin, a widely used, well-tolerated drug prescribed for patients with diabetes, may protect against liver cancer, according to a study published in Cancer Prevention Research, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research.

The study, led by Geoffrey Girnun, Ph.D., an assistant professor in the department of biochemistry and molecular biology at the University of Maryland School of Medicine, is one more in an ongoing look at the effect of metformin in cancer prevention. However, it is one of the first to evaluate liver cancer.

"Since many of the effects of the drug take place in the liver, we were surprised when we reviewed the literature that there was no direct evidence for a protective effect of metformin in liver cancer except for a few retrospective epidemiological studies," said Girnun.

He and his colleagues chemically induced liver tumors in mice. The mice taking metformin displayed minimal tumor activity, while the control mice displayed significant tumor growth.

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. Patients with diabetes, obese individuals, patients with hepatitis or patients with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease are at the greatest risk for liver cancer. All these diseases are associated with increased lipid synthesis. While diabetic patients are already prescribed metformin for their conditions, according to Girnun, the mechanism by which metformin prevents liver cancer may be transferable to these other patient populations at risk for liver cancer.

"So we are talking about a targeted population that will receive this benefit," he said.

Girnun is currently planning a clinical trial in patients at risk for liver cancer to determine if the chemopreventive qualities observed in mice are confirmed in humans.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Association for Cancer Research (AACR). Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. K. Bhalla, B. J. Hwang, R. E. Dewi, W. Twaddel, O. G. Goloubeva, K.-K. Wong, N. K. Saxena, S. Biswal, G. D. Girnun. Metformin Prevents Liver Tumorigenesis by Inhibiting Pathways Driving Hepatic Lipogenesis. Cancer Prevention Research, 2012; 5 (4): 544 DOI: 10.1158/1940-6207.CAPR-11-0228

Cite This Page:

American Association for Cancer Research (AACR). "Metformin may protect against liver cancer." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 31 March 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/03/120331151136.htm>.
American Association for Cancer Research (AACR). (2012, March 31). Metformin may protect against liver cancer. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 25, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/03/120331151136.htm
American Association for Cancer Research (AACR). "Metformin may protect against liver cancer." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/03/120331151136.htm (accessed July 25, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Friday, July 25, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Beatings and Addiction: Pakistan Drug 'clinic' Tortures Patients

Beatings and Addiction: Pakistan Drug 'clinic' Tortures Patients

AFP (July 24, 2014) A so-called drugs rehab 'clinic' is closed down in Pakistan after police find scores of ‘patients’ chained up alleging serial abuse. Duration 03:05 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Too Few Teens Receiving HPV Vaccination, CDC Says

Too Few Teens Receiving HPV Vaccination, CDC Says

Newsy (July 24, 2014) The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is blaming doctors for the low number of children being vaccinated for HPV. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
New Painkiller Designed To Discourage Abuse: Will It Work?

New Painkiller Designed To Discourage Abuse: Will It Work?

Newsy (July 24, 2014) The FDA approved Targiniq ER on Wednesday, a painkiller designed to keep users from abusing it. Like any new medication, however, it has doubters. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Doctor At Forefront Of Fighting Ebola Outbreak Gets Ebola

Doctor At Forefront Of Fighting Ebola Outbreak Gets Ebola

Newsy (July 24, 2014) Sheik Umar Khan has treated many of the people infected in the Ebola outbreak, and now he's become one of them. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins