Metformin’s role in enhancing autophagy and reducing inflammation

Nov 19, 2023

Metformin increases autophagy in the liver and intestines and reduces ageing-related inflammatory factors in elderly rats, indicating its potential to combat ageing-related diseases and promote longevity.

December 2023 – Experimental Gerontology


Key takeaways


  • Enhanced autophagy in liver and intestines: Metformin activates autophagy, a cellular cleansing process, particularly in the liver and intestines. This action helps in the removal of damaged cells and proteins, which is crucial for maintaining cellular health and function in these vital organs as you age
  • Reduction in ageing-related inflammatory factors: The drug significantly lowers the levels of inflammatory factors that are commonly associated with ageing. Chronic inflammation is a key contributor to many age-related diseases, so this reduction could potentially delay or mitigate various aspects of the ageing process
  • Potential in combating age-related diseases: By enhancing autophagy and reducing inflammation, Metformin shows promise in addressing a range of age-related diseases. This includes conditions like Alzheimer’s, cardiovascular diseases, and type 2 diabetes, which are partly driven by impaired autophagy and chronic inflammation


The overall impact of Metformin on autophagy and inflammation points to its potential as a longevity-enhancing drug. Its ability to target fundamental ageing processes suggests that it could be an effective tool in extending healthy lifespan and improving the quality of life in older individuals


Read the article at: Zhang, Y., et al. “Metformin Boosts Autophagy Levels in the Liver and Intestine and Reduces the Expression of Aging-Related Inflammatory Factors in Aged Rats.” Experimental Gerontology, vol. 169, 2023, p. 111960. ScienceDirect, doi:10.1016/j.exger.2023.111960.