ISSN 1308-8734 | E-ISSN 1308-8742
Original Article
Metabolic Syndrome and Neurotrophins: Effects of Metformin and Non-Steroidal Antiinflammatory Drug Treatment
1 Division of Endocrinology, Medical Centre of Varna, Bulgaria  
Eurasian J Med 2011; 43: 141-145
DOI: 10.5152/eajm.2011.32
Key Words: Brain-derived neurotrophic factor, Early stage metabolic syndrome, Generalized metabolic syndrome, Inflammation, Nerve growth factor


Objective: Metabolic syndrome (MS) presents with central obesity, impaired glucose metabolism, dyslipidemia and hypertension. Our aim was to examine the effect of metformin treatment either alone or in combination with non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID) on plasma levels of nerve growth factor (NGF) and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in patients with early stage MS (MS-es) and generalized MS (MS-ge).

Materials and Methods: The study compared 35 female patients with MS-es (mean age of 43.39±1.54 years) and 40 patients with MS-ge (mean age of 45.69±2.18 years) to 10 age-matched controls each. Patients with MS-es were administered 850 mg metformin twice daily. The patients with MS-ge were divided into two groups of 20 patients per group. One group received metformin alone, while the other group received metformin in combination with 500 mg aspirin and 150 mg Diclac daily. Plasma NGF and BDNF levels were measured by ELISA. Statistical data analysis was performed using ANOVA.

Results: Plasma NGF and BDNF levels were significantly higher in MS-es patients and lower in MS-ge patients than in controls. NGF levels were decreased in both groups after treatment with metformin. NGF levels were significantly higher in MS-ge patients on combined therapy than in those on metformin only.

Conclusion: The combination of metformin and NSAID treatment is more effective than metformin alone on NGF and BDNF production as well as on metabolism-related anthropometric and laboratory features. This represents a pathogenetic therapeutic mechanism in MS due to its strong anti-inflammatory effect and improves MS-ge symptoms. 

Key Words
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