Metabolic Syndrome and Breast Cancer Risk: Is There a Role for Metformin?


Journal Article

Obesity is one of the most important known preventable causes of cancer, accounting for up to 20% of cancer deaths in women. Obese women have increased risk of dying from breast cancer as well as an increased risk of distant metastasis. Metabolic Syndrome (MetSyn) is a group of metabolic conditions that include 1) abdominal obesity, 2) atherogenic dyslipidemia, 3) elevated blood pressure, and 4) insulin resistance. MetSyn is known to promote the development of cardiovascular disease and diabetes and may be associated with increased breast cancer risk. Emerging evidence supports an association between mammary adipocytes and their secreted adipocytokines and breast cancer initiation and progression. Metformin (1,1-dimethylbiguanide hydrochloride) is a drug used to treat type 2 diabetes and MetSyn. We review the potential association between MetSyn in promoting breast cancer and emerging evidence for the use of metformin in cancer prevention.

Full Text

Cited Authors

  • Ibarra-Drendall, C; Dietze, EC; Seewaldt, VL

Published Date

  • September 2011

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 3 / 3

Start / End Page

  • 142 - 150

PubMed ID

  • 21949568

Pubmed Central ID

  • 21949568

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1943-4596

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1943-4588

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1007/s12609-011-0050-8


  • eng