Metformin and ageing: improving ageing outcomes beyond glycaemic control

Willy Marcos Valencia, Ana Palacio, Leonardo Tamariz, Hermes Florez

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

45 Scopus citations


In a world where the population is ageing, there is growing interest and demand for research evaluating strategies that address the ageing process. After 60 years of successful use of metformin in our pharmaceutical armamentarium, we are learning that, beyond improving glycaemic control, metformin may have additional mechanisms and pathways of action that need further study. Although, metformin’s effect on clinical ageing outcomes may still be considered speculative, the findings from studies into cellular and animal models and from observational and pilot human studies support the existence of beneficial effects on ageing. At present, progress for human research, using randomised clinical trials to evaluate metformin’s clinical impact, has just started. Here, we present a review on the ageing process and the mechanisms involved, and the role that metformin may have to counter these. We go on to discuss the upcoming large randomised clinical trials that may provide insight on the use of metformin for ageing outcomes beyond glycaemic control.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1630-1638
Number of pages9
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1 2017


  • Ageing
  • Mechanisms of ageing
  • Metformin
  • Older adults
  • Review

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism


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