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Study suggests potential for cardiovascular benefits in patients taking oral diabetes drug

WHAT:A study published today in the August 6th issue of the American Heart Association's journal, Circulation, demonstrates that the insulin sensitizing oral anti-diabetes agent, rosiglitazone, (Avandia , GlaxoSmithKline) decreased levels of novel markers of cardiovascular disease. According to the study conducted by researchers at The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, patients treated with rosiglitazone experienced a significant reduction in the protein marker, matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP-9) and the pro-inflammatory marker, C-reactive protein (CRP). MMP-9 is involved in the modification of atherosclerotic plaque. Such plaque makes vessels vulnerable to rupture, thereby increasing the risk of heart attack. CRP is associated with inflammation, and also appears to be associated with an increased risk for cardiovascular disease. People with type 2 diabetes characteristically demonstrate higher levels of CRP. In this study, CRP and MMP-9 were analyzed from stored frozen serum samples obtained from 357 type 2 diabetes patients who completed a 26-week, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study. After 26 weeks of rosiglitazone treatment (4 mg/day or 8 mg/day), the percentage reductions in CRP and MMP-9 were statistically significant compared with baseline and placebo.
  • Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the U.S. and accounts for 50 percent of deaths worldwide
  • Type 2 diabetes is one of the most potent independent risk factors for the development of cardiovascular disease and is related to accelerated atherosclerosis
  • Atherosclerosis, a disease in which fatty material is deposited in the artery walls, accounts for the majority of cardiovascular-related mortality
  • Recent research has indicated that chronic vascular inflammation plays a role in the development of type 2 diabetes, insulin resistance and atherosclerosis. Furthermore, markers of inflammation have been shown to be powerful independent predictors of both diabetes and cardiovascular disease risk
  • WHO:Study investigators are available for interviews. For more information, or to arrange an interview, please contact Traci Mogil at 212-798-9751.