New research suggests that metformin may reduce the risk of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) in patients with type 2 diabetes (T2D).
As part of the study, researchers examined data on almost 70,000 patients from the Taiwan National Health Insurance Research Database who were diagnosed with T2D between 2001 to 2013. The researchers had theorised that as metformin suppresses inflammation and oxidative stress, it may also protect against AMD, and so they compared data on 45,524 patients with metformin use and 22,681 patients without metformin use to examine subsequent risk of AMD.
After 13 years of follow up, the researchers identified a significantly lower risk of AMD in the metformin group versus the comparison group (HR = 0.53).
“Our study is the first to reveal the protective effect of metformin on the development of AMD,” said lead investigator, Dr Yu-Yen Chen. “While more study is required to determine just how metformin protects against the development of AMD, this is an exciting development for patients at risk.”
The research was presented at the 122nd annual meeting of the American Academy of Ophthalmology at the weekend (26-30 October).