PURPOSE: To investigate the efficacy of metformin (M) plus chemotherapy versus chemotherapy alone in metastatic breast cancer (MBC).
METHODS: Non-diabetic women with HER2-negative MBC were randomized to receive non-pegylated liposomal doxorubicin (NPLD) 60 mg/m2 + cyclophosphamide (C) 600 mg/m2 × 8 cycles Q21 days plus M 2000 mg/day (arm A) versus NPLD/C (arm B). The primary endpoint was progression-free survival (PFS).
RESULTS: One-hundred-twenty-two patients were evaluable for PFS. At a median follow-up of 39.6 months (interquartile range [IQR] 24.6-50.7 months), 112 PFS events and 71 deaths have been registered. Median PFS was 9.4 months (95% CI 7.8-10.4) in arm A and 9.9 (95% CI 7.4-11.5) in arm B (P = 0.651). In patients with HOMA index < 2.5, median PFS was 10.4 months (95% CI 9.6-11.7) versus 8.5 (95% CI 5.8-9.7) in those with HOMA index ≥ 2.5 (P = 0.034). Grade 3/4 neutropenia was the most common toxicity, occurring in 54.4% of arm A patients and 72.3% of the arm B group (P = 0.019). M induced diarrhea (G2) was observed in 8.8% of patients in Arm A. The effect of M was similar in patients with HOMA index < 2.5 and ≥ 2.5, for PFS and OS.
CONCLUSIONS: The MYME trial failed to provide evidence in support of an anticancer activity of M in combination with first line CT in MBC. A significantly shorter PFS was observed in insulin-resistant patients (HOMA ≥ 2.5). Noteworthy, M had a significant effect on CT induced severe neutropenia. Further development of M in combination with CT in the setting of MBC is not warranted.