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Liraglutide, a once-daily human glucagon-like peptide 1 analogue, provides sustained improvements in glycaemic control and weight for 2 years as monotherapy compared with glimepiride in patients with type 2 diabetes.

Author(s): Garber A, Henry RR, Ratner R, Hale P, Chang CT, Bode B

Affiliation(s): Department of Medicine and the Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism, Baylor College of Medicine, 1709 Dryden Road, Houston, TX 77030, USA. agarber@bcm.tmc.edu

Publication date & source: 2011-04, Diabetes Obes Metab., 13(4):348-56.

Publication type: Clinical Trial, Phase III; Multicenter Study; Randomized Controlled Trial

AIMS: Most treatments for type 2 diabetes fail over time, necessitating combination therapy. We investigated the safety, tolerability and efficacy of liraglutide monotherapy compared with glimepiride monotherapy over 2 years. METHODS: Participants were randomized to receive once-daily liraglutide 1.2 mg, liraglutide 1.8 mg or glimepiride 8 mg. Participants completing the 1-year randomized, double-blind, double-dummy period could continue open-label treatment for an additional year. Safety data were evaluated for the full population exposed to treatment, and efficacy data were evaluated for the full intention-to-treat (ITT) and 2-year completer populations. Outcome measures included change in glycosylated haemoglobin (HbA1c), fasting plasma glucose (FPG), body weight and frequency of nausea and hypoglycaemia. RESULTS: For patients completing 2 years of therapy, HbA1c reductions were -0.6% with glimepiride versus -0.9% with liraglutide 1.2 mg (difference: -0.37, 95% CI: -0.71 to -0.02; p = 0.0376) and -1.1% with liraglutide 1.8 mg (difference: -0.55, 95% CI: -0.88 to -0.21; p = 0.0016). In the ITT population, HbA1c reductions were -0.3% with glimepiride versus -0.6% with liraglutide 1.2 mg (difference: -0.31, 95% CI: -0.54 to -0.08; p = 0.0076) and -0.9% with liraglutide 1.8 mg (difference: -0.60, 95% CI: -0.83 to -0.38; p < 0.0001). For both ITT and completer populations, liraglutide was more effective in reducing HbA1c, FPG and weight. Over 2 years, rates of minor hypoglycaemia [self-treated plasma glucose <3.1 mmol/l (<56 mg/dl)] were significantly lower with liraglutide 1.2 mg and 1.8 mg compared with glimepiride (p < 0.0001). CONCLUSION: Liraglutide monotherapy for 2 years provides significant and sustained improvements in glycaemic control and body weight compared with glimepiride monotherapy, at a lower risk of hypoglycaemia. (c) 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Page last updated: 2011-12-09

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