Combination treatment with pioglitazone and metformin is utilized clinically in the treatment of type II diabetes. Treatment with this drug combination reduced the development of aerodigestive cancers in this patient population. Our goal is to expand this treatment into clinical lung cancer chemoprevention. We hypothesized that dietary delivery of metformin/pioglitazone would prevent lung adenoma formation in A/J mice in a benzo[a]pyrene (B[a]P)-induced carcinogenesis model while modulating chemoprevention and anti-inflammatory biomarkers in residual adenomas. We found that metformin (500 and 850 mg/kg/d) and pioglitazone (15 mg/kg/d) produced statistically significant decreases in lung adenoma formation both as single-agent treatments and in combination, compared with untreated controls, after 15 weeks. Treatment with metformin alone and in combination with pioglitazone resulted in statistically significant decreases in lung adenoma formation at both early- and late-stage interventions. Pioglitazone alone resulted in significant decreases in adenoma formation only at early treatment intervention. We conclude that oral metformin is a viable chemopreventive treatment at doses ranging from 500 to 1,000 mg/kg/d. Pioglitazone at 15 mg/kg/d is a viable chemopreventive agent at early-stage interventions. Combination metformin and pioglitazone performed equal to metformin alone and better than pioglitazone at 15 mg/kg/d. Because the drugs are already FDA-approved, rapid movement to human clinical studies is possible. Cancer Prev Res; 10(2); 116–23. ©2017 AACR.
Note: Supplementary data for this article are available at Cancer Prevention Research Online (http://cancerprevres.aacrjournals.org/).
- Received September 4, 2016.
- Revision received December 1, 2016.
- Accepted December 11, 2016.
- ©2017 American Association for Cancer Research.