Metformin and breast cancer: Basic knowledge in clinical context

Laura Pizzuti, Patrizia Vici, Luigi Di Lauro, Domenico Sergi, Marina Della Giulia, Paolo Marchetti, Marcello Maugeri-Saccà, Antonio Giordano, Maddalena Barba

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Although preclinical work is vital in unraveling the molecular tenets which apply to metformin action in breast cancer, it is by nature unable to capture the host's response to metformin in terms of insulin-mediated effects and related changes in the hormonal and metabolic asset at the systemic level. The latter might sound seemingly paradoxical when considering the inveterate use of metformin in dysmetabolisms and pathologic conditions with underlying hormonal disruption.Bridging the gap between the molecular target and characteristics of breast cancer patients may help lab-based experiments and clinical work converge into one or more well characterized sub-populations instead of a sub optimally selected one. An appropriate patient selection is the main key to the most suitable outcome interpretation and amelioration, in an attempt to meet our patients needs midway between overestimation of benefits and efficacy dilution for any given intervention and/or co-intervention.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)441-447
Number of pages7
JournalCancer Treatment Reviews
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 1 2015


  • Breast cancer
  • Metformin
  • Outcome interpretation
  • Population target

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Medicine(all)


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