The diabetes drug metformin continues to expand beyond its treatment for type 2 diabetes. In addition to its potential use in treating age-related health problems, metformin can treat portal hypertension -- high blood pressure in the liver resulting from cirrhosis, according to a new study in American Journal of Physiology -- Gastrointestinal and Liver Physiology.
The study found that metformin reduced blood pressure in the liver, liver scarring and inflammation after one week of use in cirrhotic rats. Combining metformin with propranolol, which is commonly used to treat portal hypertension, further lowered liver blood pressure. This drug combination may be a more effective therapy for portal hypertension and warrants further clinical evaluation, the researchers wrote.
The article "Metformin reduces hepatic resistance and portal pressure in cirrhotic rats" is published ahead-of-print in American Journal of Physiology -- Gastrointestinal and Liver Physiology.
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