Metformin decelerates aging and development of mammary tumors in HER-2/neu transgenic mice

Bull Exp Biol Med. 2005 Jun;139(6):721-3. doi: 10.1007/s10517-005-0389-9.


Transgenic FVB/N female mice carrying HER-2/neu mammary cancer gene received metformin (1200 mg/liter) with drinking water 5 days a week starting from the age of 2 months until natural death. Metformin slightly reduced food consumption, but did not change water consumption and dynamics of weight gain. Mean life span of mice increased by 8% (p<0.05), in 10% long-living mice it was prolonged by 13.1%, and the maximum life span was prolonged by 1 month under the effect of metformin in comparison with the control. The rate of populational aging decreased by 2.26 times. The total incidence of mammary adenocarcinoma and their multiplicity did not change under the effect of metformin, while the latency of tumor development increased and the mean diameter of tumors decreased. Hence, we first demonstrated a geroprotective effect of metformin and its suppressive effect towards the development of mammary tumors.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adenocarcinoma / pathology
  • Adenocarcinoma / prevention & control
  • Animals
  • Female
  • Homozygote
  • Hypoglycemic Agents / pharmacology*
  • Longevity / drug effects*
  • Mammary Neoplasms, Animal / chemically induced*
  • Mammary Neoplasms, Experimental / pathology
  • Mammary Neoplasms, Experimental / prevention & control*
  • Metformin / pharmacology*
  • Mice
  • Mice, Transgenic
  • Receptor, ErbB-2 / genetics
  • Survival Analysis
  • Time Factors


  • Hypoglycemic Agents
  • Metformin
  • Receptor, ErbB-2