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The journey of metformin from glycaemic control to mTOR inhibition and the suppression of tumour growth

Amin, S; Lux, A; O'Callaghan, F; (2019) The journey of metformin from glycaemic control to mTOR inhibition and the suppression of tumour growth. British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology , 85 (1) pp. 37-46. 10.1111/bcp.13780. Green open access

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Abstract

Our knowledge of the effect of metformin on human health is increasing. In addition to its ability to improve the control of hyperglycaemia, metformin has been shown to reduce the burden o,f ageing via effects on damaged DNA and the process of apoptosis. Studies have shown that metformin may reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease through influences on body weight, blood pressure, cholesterol levels and the progression of atherosclerosis. Studies also suggest that metformin may be beneficial for neuro-psychiatric disorders, cognitive impairment and in reducing the risk of dementia, erectile dysfunction and Duchenne muscular dystrophy. In vivo and in vitro studies have shown that metformin has anti-cancer properties, and population studies have suggested that metformin may reduce the risk of cancer or improve cancer prognosis. It is thought that it exerts its anti-cancer effect through the inhibition of the mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) signalling pathway. Because of its effect on the mTOR pathway, there may be a role for metformin in slowing or reversing growth of life-threatening hamartomas in tuberous sclerosis complex.

Type: Article
Title: The journey of metformin from glycaemic control to mTOR inhibition and the suppression of tumour growth
Location: England
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1111/bcp.13780
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1111/bcp.13780
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: clinical pharmacology, genetic polymorphism, genetics and pharmacogenetics, neurology, therapeutics
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > UCL GOS Institute of Child Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > UCL GOS Institute of Child Health > Developmental Neurosciences Dept
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10063975
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