Potential Benefits of Metformin Use in Sickle Cell Anemia

Nejc Umek, Chiedozie Kenneth Ugwoke


Sickle cell anemia (SCA) is one of the most important genetic disorders known to mankind. Even with the impressive advances in medical science, effective treatment and cure remain challenging. Currently available treatments including hydroxyurea, which is the only FDA approved drug for SCA, and hemopoietic stem cell transplantation all have significant limitations, so the search for new therapeutic options continues. Metformin, the traditional antidiabetic drug has recently gained novel attention from accumulating molecular evidence suggesting its pleiotropic effects and new potential applications. Our study of these new understandings of the pharmacodynamics and pleiotropic effects leads us to propose that the drug may be of potential therapeutic benefit in SCA. Our arguments are premised on a logical correlation of the interconnected pathophysiologic mechanisms in SCA with current information on the molecular pharmacodynamics of metformin. We reviewed existing evidence and deduced the diverse effects of metformin of relevant therapeutic significance in SCA, including enhancement of nitric oxide bioavailability, induction of fetal hemoglobin synthesis, attenuation of the inflammatory phenotype and beneficial effects in ischemia/reperfusion injury. Collectively, these considerations lead us to infer that there is reasonable evidence to support potential therapeutic adaptation of metformin in SCA.

J Hematol. 2016;5(2):41-48
doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.14740/jh275w


Metformin; Sickle cell anemia; Fetal hemoglobin; eNOS; Inflammation; Ischemia/reperfusion injury

Full Text: HTML PDF

Browse  Journals  


Journal of Clinical Medicine Research

Journal of Endocrinology and Metabolism

Journal of Clinical Gynecology and Obstetrics

World Journal of Oncology

Gastroenterology Research

Journal of Hematology

Journal of Medical Cases

Journal of Current Surgery

Clinical Infection and Immunity

Cardiology Research

World Journal of Nephrology and Urology

Cellular and Molecular Medicine Research

Journal of Neurology Research

International Journal of Clinical Pediatrics






Journal of Hematology, bimonthly, ISSN 1927-1212 (print), 1927-1220 (online), published by Elmer Press Inc.                            
The content of this site is intended for health care professionals.
This is an open-access journal distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, which permits unrestricted
non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Creative Commons Attribution license (Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International CC BY-NC 4.0)

This journal follows the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) recommendations for manuscripts submitted to biomedical journals,
the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) guidelines, and the Principles of Transparency and Best Practice in Scholarly Publishing.

website: www.thejh.org    editorial contact: editor@thejh.org
Address: 9225 Leslie Street, Suite 201, Richmond Hill, Ontario, L4B 3H6, Canada

© Elmer Press Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in the published articles are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the editors and Elmer Press Inc. This website is provided for medical research and informational purposes only and does not constitute any medical advice or professional services. The information provided in this journal should not be used for diagnosis and treatment, those seeking medical advice should always consult with a licensed physician.