Metformin (MET) is the first-line drug for treating type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). However, MET increases blood lactate levels in patients with T2DM. Lactate possesses proinflammatory properties and causes insulin resistance (IR). Oxamate (OXA), a lactate dehydrogenase inhibitor, can decrease tissue lactate production and blood lactate levels. This study was conducted to examine the effects of the combination of OXA and MET on inflammation, and IR in diabetic db/db mice. Supplementation of OXA to MET led to lowered tissue lactate production and serum lactate levels compared to MET alone, accompanied with further decreased tissue and blood levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines, along with better insulin sensitivity, beta-cell mass, and glycemic control in diabetic db/db mice. These results show that OXA enhances the anti-inflammatory and insulin-sensitizing effects of MET through the inhibition of tissue lactate production in db/db mice.

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