Anti-diabetic drug is anti-tuberculosis too

Scientists from Singapore Immunology Network(SIgN), A*STAR have discovered that the widely-used anti-diabetic drug, Metformin, can also be used for the treatment of tuberculosis (TB). They found out that Metformin can enhance the efficacy of TB medication without inducing drug resistance.

Metformin can indirectly control Mycobacterium Tuberculosis (bacteria that causes TB) replication by triggering the host cells to produce a chemical which damages the bacteria. The scientists validated these findings with patient data provided by the Tuberculosis Clinical Unit at the Tan Tock Seng Hospital. “Using MET as an adjunct treatment for TB is very promising since this drug interferes with the biochemical pathway essential for the bacteria’s survival and does not promote the development of drug resistance. MET is also a very cheap and safe drug with no adverse effect on non-diabetic patients. This would likely shorten clinical trials and we are confident that a better and affordable TB treatment will be made available soon,” said lead scientists Dr Amit Singhal, Project Leader and Prof Gennaro De Libero, Principal Investigator at SIgN.


The above story is based on materials provided by A*STAR.

The published article can be read here.

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