Active Ingredient History
Metformin is the most widely used drug to treat type 2 diabetes, and is one of only two oral antidiabetic drugs on the World Health Organization (WHO) list of essential medicines. Metformin is an antihyperglycemic agent which improves glucose tolerance in patients with type 2 diabetes, lowering both basal and postprandial plasma glucose. Metformin decreases hepatic glucose production, decreases intestinal absorption of glucose, and improves insulin sensitivity by increasing peripheral glucose uptake and utilization. However, we still do not completely understand its mechanisms of action. The main effect of this drug from the biguanide family is to acutely decrease hepatic glucose production, mostly through a mild and transient inhibition of the mitochondrial respiratory chain complex I. In addition, the resulting decrease in hepatic energy status activates AMPK (AMP-activated protein kinase), a cellular metabolic sensor, providing a generally accepted mechanism for the action of metformin on hepatic gluconeogenesis. The use of metformin, the most commonly prescribed drug for type 2 diabetes, was repeatedly associated with the decreased risk of the occurrence of various types of cancers, especially of pancreas and colon and hepatocellular carcinoma. NCATS
Drug Pricing (per unit)
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