Metformin and colon cancer prevention

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CherylHutch
CherylHutch Member Posts: 1,375 Member
edited March 2014 in Colorectal Cancer #1
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This is a very interesting article about how the Diabetes 2 drug, Metformin, has shown great promise in preventing colon cancer in the early stages. Whereas chemo and radiation burn and kill cancer cells, this very common drug, that has a history of being safe, appears to stop the growth of cancer cells and, without growth, cancer cells die. I find that a fascinating concept. Research has only been done on mice, so it's still a ways off before the studies/clinical trials are done on humans... and what dosage would be needed.

I'm sure we have people here on this board that have Diabetes 2 and are taking Metaformin. Now, it's not to say the dosage one is on for diabetes would be the same dosage you would need to impact cancer cells... and although the drug has a long history of being a safe drug, they would have to do studies to see how high of a dosage can humans have before it becomes unsafe.

The problem, according to this article,

it's been tough getting funding for her studies because metformin is "an orphan drug," a generic drug not backed by any pharmaceutical company. And with no patent, there is no financial incentive for drug companies to fund research.

which, once again, hits on my pet peeve that the pharmacy industry has way too much power/control and they are all about "for profit" rather than saving lives.

But this does look promising and hopefully the money will appear soon, now that the media are reporting on it, so that the needed research can be done. They mention catching colon cancer in the early stages, but that same premise would seem to be promising for Stage IV patients as well, especially if their tumours are "stable"... wouldn't you think??

Cheryl

Comments

  • Nana b
    Nana b Member Posts: 3,030 Member
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    Cheryl you look radiant!
    I think you need to write a book, your style of writing gets one's attention! Regarding the article, I would like to know, how many folks out there are on this drug and how long they have been in remission.
  • CherylHutch
    CherylHutch Member Posts: 1,375 Member
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    Nana b said:

    Cheryl you look radiant!
    I think you need to write a book, your style of writing gets one's attention! Regarding the article, I would like to know, how many folks out there are on this drug and how long they have been in remission.

    How many are on Metformin
    Hey Nana b!! Speaking of looking radiant.... look at you!!! :D Are you the same Nana b who, when you first came on board your picture was taken of you in a car, looking out the window?? If so, could you please explain how you managed to drop oh 20 years or so?? Hehehe... this picture was taken of me about a week ago, at a closing night party. It was taken at about 3am... LOL!! Can you tell I'm starting to get a little tired at that time of the morning?? It's hard to keep up with the 20 year olds!! LOL!

    Now as for your question... I don't think ANYONE is on this medication for cancer per se. Two recent studies have been done with mice. The first one was with Metformin and lung cancer... and that proved quite promising. The second study was using Metformin to prevent colon cancer tumours in the early stages (I interjected with the possibility that if it does well with tumours in Stage 1/2, then it should also help with Stage 3/4 tumours one would think).

    As per the article:


    What excites researchers is that unlike chemotherapy and radiation, which burn and poison cancer cells, metformin's effects are more subtle.

    It's thought the drug works by targeting a cancer tumour's stem cells which, if not killed off, can allow various cancer cell types to regenerate.

    "It's not killing them; it is actually suppressing their growth and without growth, the cells eventually die," explains Vuk Stambolic, a cancer researcher at Princess Margaret Hospital in Toronto.


    How much Metformin one would have to take to have this kind of success in humans is something they would still have to research... even to the point would the trials done on humans be as successful as on mice. Of course, to do these studies and research one needs money.... and the pharmaceutical companies are not interested in financing these kind of studies because Metformin is not a patented drug so no particular drug company stands to make more because no one owns the patent to this particular drug.

    Now doesn't THAT just rub you the wrong way??? Grrrrr!

    Cheryl
  • Nana b
    Nana b Member Posts: 3,030 Member
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    How many are on Metformin
    Hey Nana b!! Speaking of looking radiant.... look at you!!! :D Are you the same Nana b who, when you first came on board your picture was taken of you in a car, looking out the window?? If so, could you please explain how you managed to drop oh 20 years or so?? Hehehe... this picture was taken of me about a week ago, at a closing night party. It was taken at about 3am... LOL!! Can you tell I'm starting to get a little tired at that time of the morning?? It's hard to keep up with the 20 year olds!! LOL!

    Now as for your question... I don't think ANYONE is on this medication for cancer per se. Two recent studies have been done with mice. The first one was with Metformin and lung cancer... and that proved quite promising. The second study was using Metformin to prevent colon cancer tumours in the early stages (I interjected with the possibility that if it does well with tumours in Stage 1/2, then it should also help with Stage 3/4 tumours one would think).

    As per the article:


    What excites researchers is that unlike chemotherapy and radiation, which burn and poison cancer cells, metformin's effects are more subtle.

    It's thought the drug works by targeting a cancer tumour's stem cells which, if not killed off, can allow various cancer cell types to regenerate.

    "It's not killing them; it is actually suppressing their growth and without growth, the cells eventually die," explains Vuk Stambolic, a cancer researcher at Princess Margaret Hospital in Toronto.


    How much Metformin one would have to take to have this kind of success in humans is something they would still have to research... even to the point would the trials done on humans be as successful as on mice. Of course, to do these studies and research one needs money.... and the pharmaceutical companies are not interested in financing these kind of studies because Metformin is not a patented drug so no particular drug company stands to make more because no one owns the patent to this particular drug.

    Now doesn't THAT just rub you the wrong way??? Grrrrr!

    Cheryl

    Hi
    I thought that maybe someone on cancer was on it because of being diabetic....

    I don't remember the car photo...thanks! I wish we had history pictures, I would like to see what I looked like when I was undergoing chemo! I didn't then but now it would be okay!

    You're right, Grrrrrr!
  • angelsbaby
    angelsbaby Member Posts: 1,165 Member
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    Nana b said:

    Hi
    I thought that maybe someone on cancer was on it because of being diabetic....

    I don't remember the car photo...thanks! I wish we had history pictures, I would like to see what I looked like when I was undergoing chemo! I didn't then but now it would be okay!

    You're right, Grrrrrr!

    Angel
    was on that drug for his diabetis 1000mg aday for about five years. for him it did not help one bit. but angel could not stop the candy and beer so his blood sugar was always high even with the meds ,So for angel the metformin didn't really help. But maybe a higher dose will be interesting to see where this will lead.

    michelle
  • bdee
    bdee Member Posts: 304
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    Angel
    was on that drug for his diabetis 1000mg aday for about five years. for him it did not help one bit. but angel could not stop the candy and beer so his blood sugar was always high even with the meds ,So for angel the metformin didn't really help. But maybe a higher dose will be interesting to see where this will lead.

    michelle

    Metformin
    I've been on 1,000 Metformin for 2 years, have Stage IV cancer for 19 months. My diabetes is very well under control, my A1C's are always between 4.9 and 5.9. I watch my sugar intake, I just don't exercise. Too tired to even think of doing it.
    So what do you get from my numbers. My oncologist even wants me to stop Metformin because my diabetes numbers are always good. I haven't had a high number sugar count since I had my surgery and they were force feeding me a glucose bag every six hours. Now that really raised my number, but no more than 140.

    Debbie in Arkansas
  • HeartofSoul
    HeartofSoul Member Posts: 729 Member
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    How many are on Metformin
    Hey Nana b!! Speaking of looking radiant.... look at you!!! :D Are you the same Nana b who, when you first came on board your picture was taken of you in a car, looking out the window?? If so, could you please explain how you managed to drop oh 20 years or so?? Hehehe... this picture was taken of me about a week ago, at a closing night party. It was taken at about 3am... LOL!! Can you tell I'm starting to get a little tired at that time of the morning?? It's hard to keep up with the 20 year olds!! LOL!

    Now as for your question... I don't think ANYONE is on this medication for cancer per se. Two recent studies have been done with mice. The first one was with Metformin and lung cancer... and that proved quite promising. The second study was using Metformin to prevent colon cancer tumours in the early stages (I interjected with the possibility that if it does well with tumours in Stage 1/2, then it should also help with Stage 3/4 tumours one would think).

    As per the article:


    What excites researchers is that unlike chemotherapy and radiation, which burn and poison cancer cells, metformin's effects are more subtle.

    It's thought the drug works by targeting a cancer tumour's stem cells which, if not killed off, can allow various cancer cell types to regenerate.

    "It's not killing them; it is actually suppressing their growth and without growth, the cells eventually die," explains Vuk Stambolic, a cancer researcher at Princess Margaret Hospital in Toronto.


    How much Metformin one would have to take to have this kind of success in humans is something they would still have to research... even to the point would the trials done on humans be as successful as on mice. Of course, to do these studies and research one needs money.... and the pharmaceutical companies are not interested in financing these kind of studies because Metformin is not a patented drug so no particular drug company stands to make more because no one owns the patent to this particular drug.

    Now doesn't THAT just rub you the wrong way??? Grrrrr!

    Cheryl

    Perhaps the metaformin has
    Perhaps the metaformin has properites to slow or stop Metastasis of cancer tumors which require Angiogenesis to grow. Were at the mouse level now and funding is crucial.

    Cancer researchers studying the conditions necessary for cancer metastasis have discovered that one of the critical events required is the growth of a new network of blood vessels. This process of forming new blood vessels is called angiogenesis.

    What Is Tumor Angiogenesis?

    Tumor angiogenesis is the proliferation of a network of blood vessels that penetrates into cancerous growths, supplying nutrients and oxygen and removing waste products. Tumor angiogenesis actually starts with cancerous tumor cells releasing molecules that send signals to surrounding normal host tissue. This signaling activates certain genes in the host tissue that, in turn, make proteins to encourage growth of new blood vessels.
  • ron50
    ron50 Member Posts: 1,723 Member
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    The accidental tourist of ca survival strikes again
    Coincidence is getting scary. Tagamet was discussed as having an impact on colon ca.I was on it before during and after dx. Now metformin . I have been taking 500 mg daily for two years. It will be interesting to see if I have less polyps in my yearly scopes. I guess somebody knows whats good for me or I have a number painted on my back that I can't see,cheers lab rat no 48.
  • k1
    k1 Member Posts: 220 Member
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    ron50 said:

    The accidental tourist of ca survival strikes again
    Coincidence is getting scary. Tagamet was discussed as having an impact on colon ca.I was on it before during and after dx. Now metformin . I have been taking 500 mg daily for two years. It will be interesting to see if I have less polyps in my yearly scopes. I guess somebody knows whats good for me or I have a number painted on my back that I can't see,cheers lab rat no 48.

    metformin
    I took metformin for 12 years and roughly over that same period (judging by my doctor's estimate about the size of the tumor) I was simultaneously developing colon cancer. I got on it soon after it came out on the market because they said so many wonderful things about metformin's ability to do all sorts of wondrous things back then in the 1990s-- like prevent pre-diabetes from turning into full-fledged diabetes, make weight loss easier to achieve, increase fertility in women with polycystic ovaries, and all sorts of other stop aging in its tracks kinds of things. I can't tell that it did anything for me except cause premature hair loss (a known side effect), but that doesn't mean that it might not work for someone else.
    K1