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Ref Type Journal Article
PMID (17062558)
Authors Zakikhani M, Dowling R, Fantus IG, Sonenberg N, Pollak M
Title Metformin is an AMP kinase-dependent growth inhibitor for breast cancer cells.
Journal Cancer research
Vol 66
Issue 21
Date 2006 Nov 1
URL
Abstract Text Recent population studies provide clues that the use of metformin may be associated with reduced incidence and improved prognosis of certain cancers. This drug is widely used in the treatment of type 2 diabetes, where it is often referred to as an "insulin sensitizer" because it not only lowers blood glucose but also reduces the hyperinsulinemia associated with insulin resistance. As insulin and insulin-like growth factors stimulate proliferation of many normal and transformed cell types, agents that facilitate signaling through these receptors would be expected to enhance proliferation. We show here that metformin acts as a growth inhibitor rather than an insulin sensitizer for epithelial cells. Breast cancer cells can be protected against metformin-induced growth inhibition by small interfering RNA against AMP kinase. This shows that AMP kinase pathway activation by metformin, recently shown to be necessary for metformin inhibition of gluconeogenesis in hepatocytes, is also involved in metformin-induced growth inhibition of epithelial cells. The growth inhibition was associated with decreased mammalian target of rapamycin and S6 kinase activation and a general decrease in mRNA translation. These results provide evidence for a mechanism that may contribute to the antineoplastic effects of metformin suggested by recent population studies and justify further work to explore potential roles for activators of AMP kinase in cancer prevention and treatment.

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Molecular Profile Treatment Approach
Gene Name Source Synonyms Protein Domains Gene Description Gene Role
Therapy Name Drugs Efficacy Evidence Clinical Trials
Drug Name Trade Name Synonyms Drug Classes Drug Description
Gene Variant Impact Protein Effect Variant Description Associated with drug Resistance
Molecular Profile Indication/Tumor Type Response Type Therapy Name Approval Status Evidence Type Efficacy Evidence References
STK11 loss Advanced Solid Tumor no benefit Metformin Preclinical - Cell culture Actionable In a preclinical study, Glucophage (metformin) was unable to inhibit cancer cell growth in cancer cell lines with biallelic loss of STK11 (PMID: 17062558, PMID: 18006825). 18006825 17062558
STK11 wild-type Advanced Solid Tumor sensitive Metformin Preclinical - Cell culture Actionable In a preclinical studies, Glucophage (metformin) inhibited cancer cell growth by activating the AMP kinase pathway in a variety of cancer cell lines that retained one functional allele of STK11 (PMID: 17062558, PMID: 18006825). 18006825 17062558