Monday, June 09, 2008

While You Were At ADA

Friday's liraglutide v exenatide (Byetta) skirmish was just the beginning of the data to roll in from San Francisco, where the American Diabetes Association is holding its annual meeting. For a complete run-down of all the press releases, click here. Keep reading for some highlights and the rest of the weekend's news ...

  • Gliptins! BMS said on Saturday that saxagliptin--which the company is now calling Onglyza, once again proving all the good names are taken--controlled glucose levels in previously untreated Type 2 diabetics, in a 24-week Phase III study. Also on Saturday Takeda chimed in with results of five Phase III studies of alogliptin which lowered glucose alone and in combination with four common diabetes drugs.
  • Phase II data from Sanofi's AVE0010 GLP-1 agonist were good enough that the French pharma plans to initiate a 3800-patient Phase III program, according to Reuters.
  • Gee, all that glucose control data is great, fellas. But according to two long-term studies published in the New England Journal of Medicine and presented at ADA, aggressively controlling blood glucose in Type 2 diabetics at high risk for cardiovascular disease doesn't result in a statistically significant reduction in CV events nor CV-related death--in fact one of the studies showed an incease in deaths associated with intensively controlled blood glucose. There were differences in the two trials, ADVANCE and ACCORD, says a related NEJM editorial, and "both studies are important contributions to the field but do not provide a definitive answer to the problem of glycemic control and cardiovascular disease." A third study, the Veterans Affairs Diabetes Trial (VADT), similarly found no significant link between intensive glucose control and reduced macrovascular events like heart attack and stroke.
  • Charles Grassley 1, Harvard child psychiatrists, 0. By not fully disclosing financial support from the pharmaceutical industry, two Harvard docs may have violated federal and university research rules designed to police potential conflicts of interest, says Grassley (reports the New York Times). "The Harvard group’s consulting arrangements with drug makers were already controversial because of the researchers’ advocacy of unapproved uses of psychiatric medicines in children," reports the Times.
  • Sanofi is axing a third of its drug reps in France--as many as 800--the company confirmed to Les Echos ($) on Monday (Hat Tip: Pharmagossip)

Image from flickr user kumasawa used under a creative commons license.

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