Diabetes drug can’t help advanced heart failure patients

By: |
November 9, 2015 6:24 PM

A recent study has revealed that a type-2 diabetes therapy is ineffective in the treatment of high-risk heart failure patients.

A recent study has revealed that a type-2 diabetes therapy is ineffective in the treatment of high-risk heart failure patients.

In an attempt to correct defects in the energy generation that contributes to poor pump function among heart failure patients, University of Pennsylvania researchers examined whether the diabetes drug liraglutide could improve the condition of patients with advanced heart failure.

Despite improvements in blood sugar control, the therapy did not improve the clinical stability or pumping action of the heart in patients with advanced heart failure.

Principle investigator Kenneth B. Margulies presented data from the Functional Impact of GLP-1 for Heart Failure Treatment (FIGHT) study at the American Heart Association Scientific Sessions 2015.

Heart failure, a chronic condition in which the heart does not pump enough blood through the body, affects more than 5 million Americans.

Abnormalities in the way the heart generates energy from fats and glucose, including resistance to the normal actions of insulin, have been shown to contribute to a patient’s risk of heart failure. But no current heart failure treatments target these metabolic derangements, said Margulies.

He noted that because liraglutide counters insulin resistance, and earlier pilot studies suggest that severely weakened hearts have the greatest metabolic defects and potential benefit, it seemed most appropriate test the efficacy of liraglutide in a group of patients with advanced heart failure.

Additional research, he says, will ultimately determine whether GLP-agonists, like liraglutide, can be used safely among patients with various stages of heart failure.

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