Increased stress, dietary habits, and sedentary lifestyle practices have increased the chances of type 2 diabetes in women. A new study published in the Annals of Oncology discusses how there might be a link between type 2 diabetes and breast cancer in accordance with metformin, a drug used to treat type 2 diabetes. Metformin is a widely used drug in treatment of diabetes, polycystic ovary syndrome among several others.
Relation b/w Diabetes Drug Metformin & Estrogen-Positive Breast Cancer
The paper published explains how taking Metformin can reduce the chances of estrogen-positive breast cancer in women with type 2 diabetes. However, the team also points to a situation where that, on the other hand, the drug can produce a higher risk of developing triple-negative breast cancer by 73%. Estrogen is a group of hormones responsible for the growth of breast and the functioning of the reproductive organs. Estrogen-positive cancer is a condition in which the receptors in the body allow estrogen to grow causing tumors or other ailments. While hormone therapy is usually given to treat estrogen-positive cancer, it is a beneficial finding that Metformin reduces the risk of type 2 diabetes women developing estrogen-positive cancer. Researchers have also mentioned that there is no evidence about the positive effect of Metformin on estrogen-receptor negative breast cancer.
Metformin & Triple-Negative Breast Cancer
But, the fact that Metformin increases the risk of triple-negative breast cancer in diabetic women is quite concerning. A cancer growth that tests negative on estrogen, progesterone, and HER2 protein is called triple-negative breast cancer. Though the survival rate of women with triple-negative breast cancer is 77%, the high risk of developing this condition has caused scientists to think over the nature of the drug Metformin. However, in the study that involved the monitoring of 44,000 women for a span of eight years, only a few had developed triple-negative breast cancer.
The researchers have also established that women with type 2 diabetes are advised to get a regular screening for breast cancer to rule out the worst since the study relating the link between diabetes and breast cancer is still in progress. Learn the eight different ways to prevent breast cancer.