A new study suggests that the common diabetes medication metformin may be considered for use in the prevention or treatment of ovarian cancer. Published early online in CANCER, a peer-reviewed journal of the American Cancer Society, the study found that ovarian cancer patients who took the drug tended to live longer than patients who did not take it.
New treatments are desperately needed for ovarian cancer. Previous research has indicated that metformin, which originates from the French Lilac plant, may have anticancer properties. To look for an effect of the medication in ovarian cancer, Viji Shridhar, PhD, Sanjeev Kumar, MD, both of the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN, and their colleagues analyzed information from 61 patients with ovarian cancer who took metformin and 178 patients who did not.
Sixty-seven percent of those who took metformin had not died from ovarian cancer within five years, compared with 47 percent of those who did not take the medication. After accounting for factors such as cancer severity and patients' body mass index, the investigators found that patients taking metformin were 3.7 times more likely to survive throughout the study than those not taking it.
The findings demonstrate only a correlation between metformin intake and better survival, and additional studies are needed to decipher whether the observations made in this study represent a true beneficial effect of metformin in patients with ovarian cancer.
"This study opens the door for using metformin in large-scale randomized trials in ovarian cancer which can ultimately lead to metformin being one option for treatment of patients with the disease," said Dr. Shridhar. Such trials are currently underway in breast cancer. "We think that ovarian cancer research needs to follow that example," said Dr. Kumar.
This press release was posted to serve as a topic for discussion. Please comment below. We try our best to only post press releases that are associated with peer reviewed scientific literature. Critical discussions of the research are appreciated. If you need help finding a link to the original article, please contact us on twitter or via e-mail.
Caitlin Doughty has been cutting pacemakers out of corpses, grinding human bones by hand, and loading bodies into cremation chambers for seven years. But the 30-year-old mortician doesn't want to keep all the fun to herself: She thinks the rest of us should get to have a little more face time with the deceased.
A trial of an experimental vaccine against the Ebola virus is to begin in Oxford.
A simple urine test for the virus that causes cervical cancer could offer a less invasive and more acceptable alternative to the conventional cervical smear test, researchers said on Tuesday.
President Barack Obama and U.S. Senate commit to help West Africa wallop the virus
Many airlines don't want to have their crews overnight in an Ebola area or send them to a place where they can't get adequate health care if something goes wrong.
“Sic semper tyrannis,” Brutus supposedly yelled as he helped assassinate Julius Caesar: Thus always to tyrants. John Wilkes Booth exclaimed the same to the panicked crowd in Ford’s Theater after he shot Lincoln. And in dark underground burrows in east Africa, I’m willing to bet the homely yet somehow charming naked mole rat is yelling
As a kid, director James Cameron was fascinated with exploring the world around him — everything from pond water to bugs. Those childhood obsessions led him some of the deepest places underwater.
Damaging effects of grief on the immune system not seen in younger people, whose defences seemed more resilient
Longer lives means more decades of intimacy. Drugs that help male physiology match desire have affected more than just the body, men who take these pills say.
The World Health Organization is launching the biggest emergency clinical trials in history as experimental treatments are prepared for the Ebola epidemic