Dr. Weeks’ Comment: Doctors using Corrective Cancer Care have long utilized Metformin or berberine and now conventional oncologists are catching on. Also good news is their finally focusing on using metformin to kill cancer STEM cells (CSC).
“…CSCs have been described in several solid tumors, including prostate cancer, and contribute to therapeutic resistance and tumor recurrence…”
- Prostate cancer and prostatic diseases. 2015 Jul 28 [Epub ahead of print]
M J Mayer,
There is a need for more effective therapy for advanced prostate cancer. One potential target is the cancer stem cell (CSC). CSCs have been described in several solid tumors, including prostate cancer, and contribute to therapeutic resistance and tumor recurrence. Metformin, a common oral biguanide used to treat type 2 diabetes, has been demonstrated to have anti-neoplastic effects. Specifically, metformin targets CSCs in breast cancer, pancreatic cancer, glioblastoma and colon cancer. Metformin acts directly on the mitochondria to inhibit oxidative phosphorylation and reduce mitochondrial ATP production. This forces tumor cells to compensate by increasing the rate of glycolysis. CSCs rely heavily on mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation for energy production. The glycolytic switch results in an energy crisis in these cells. Metformin could be used to exploit this metabolic weakness in CSCs. This would increase CSC sensitivity to conventional cancer therapies, circumventing treatment resistance and enhancing treatment efficacy. This review will explore the characteristics of prostate CSCs, their role in tumor propagation and therapeutic resistance and the role of metformin as a potential prostate CSC sensitizer to current anticancer therapies. Prostate Cancer and Prostatic Disease advance online publication, 28 July 2015; doi:10. 1038/pcan. 2015. 35.