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Diabetes drug metformin could help prevent infertility

A Spanish study has found that the early and extended treatment of diabetes with the drug metformin could delay or halt the onset of a common cause of infertility in adolescent girls.
The research, which is to be published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism, involved monitoring 38 girls with low birth-weight and early puberty with the aim of comparing the effectiveness of taking metformin either early or late for preventing adolescent polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS).
The researchers argue that the most crucial time for PCOS development could be during childhood and puberty, when excessive amounts of fat are stored in the body, which overexposes the ovaries to insulin. This can cause a halt in ovulation and make the ovaries release male hormones, leading to PCOS.
Lourdes Ibanez, lead author on the study, commented “Metformin, when given across the potentially critical window of puberty, may have the capacity to reprogram metabolism toward less abdominal and liver fat.”
There was also an investigation that treated 8-year-old girls with metformin every day over a four-year period, and compared the results with another group of girls who had to wait for five years before they received daily doses of metformin at the age of 13, with treatment lasting for only a year. This revealed that early metformin therapy helped to prevent or delay the development of PCOS more effectively than late metformin treatment .

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