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Can Antidiabetic Drugs Improve Male Reproductive (Dys)Function Associated with Diabetes?

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The alarming increase in the number of diabetic patients worldwide raises concerns regarding the impact of the disease on global health, not to mention on social and economic aspects. Furthermore, the association of this complex metabolic disorder with male reproductive impairment is worrying, mainly due to the increasing chances that young individuals, at the apex of their reproductive window, could be affected by the disease, further contributing to the disturbing decline in male fertility worldwide. The cornerstone of diabetes management is glycemic control, proven to be effective in avoiding, minimizing or preventing the appearance or development of disease-related complications. Nonetheless, the possible impact of these therapeutic interventions on male reproductive function is essentially unexplored. To address this issue, we have made a critical assessment of the literature on the effects of several antidiabetic drugs on male reproductive function. While the crucial role of insulin is clear, as shown by the recovery of reproductive impairments in insulin-deficient individuals after treatment, the same clearly does not apply to other antidiabetic strategies. In fact, there is an abundance of controversial reports, possibly related to the various study designs, experimental models and compounds used, which include biguanides, sulfonylureas, meglitinides, thiazolidinediones/glitazones, bile acid sequestrants, amylin mimetics, as well as sodiumglucose co-transporter 2 (SGLT2) inhibitors, glucagon-like peptide 1 (GLP1), α-glucosidase inhibitors and dipeptidyl peptidase 4 (DPP4) inhibitors. These aspects constitute the focus of the current review.
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Keywords: Diabetes; SGLT2; antidiabetic therapies; diabetic problems; infertility; male reproductive function; reproductive dysfunction

Document Type: Review Article

Publication date: July 1, 2019

This article was made available online on March 5, 2019 as a Fast Track article with title: "Can Antidiabetic Drugs Improve Male Reproductive (Dys)Function Associated with Diabetes?".

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  • Current Medicinal Chemistry covers all the latest and outstanding developments in medicinal chemistry and rational drug design. Each issue contains a series of timely in-depth reviews written by leaders in the field covering a range of the current topics in medicinal chemistry. Current Medicinal Chemistry is an essential journal for every medicinal chemist who wishes to be kept informed and up-to-date with the latest and most important developments.
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