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BACKGROUND: Sodium-glucose cotransporter-2 inhibitors (SGLT2i) and glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor agonists (GLP-1 RA) improve cardiovascular and renal outcomes in patients with type 2 diabetes through distinct mechanisms. However, evidence on clinical outcomes in patients treated with both GLP-1 RA and SGLT2i is lacking. We aim to provide insight into the effects of open-label SGLT2i use in parallel with or shortly after once-weekly GLP-1 RA exenatide (EQW) on cardiorenal outcomes. METHODS: In the EXSCEL cardiovascular outcomes trial EQW arm, SGLT2i drop-in occurred in 8.7% of participants. These EQW+SGLT2i users were propensity-matched to: (1) placebo-arm participants not taking SGLT2i (n = 572 per group); and to (2) EQW-arm participants not taking SGLT2i (n = 575), based on their last measured characteristics before SGLT2i initiation, and equivalent study visit in comparator groups. Time-to-first major adverse cardiovascular event (MACE) and all-cause mortality (ACM) were compared using Cox regression analyses. eGFR slopes were quantified using mixed model repeated measurement analyses. RESULTS: In adjusted analyses, the risk for MACE with combination EQW+SGLT2i use was numerically lower compared with both placebo (adjusted hazard ratio 0.68, 95% CI 0.39-1.17) and EQW alone (0.85, 0.48-1.49). Risk of ACM was nominally significantly reduced compared with placebo (0.38, 0.16-0.90) and compared with EQW (0.41, 0.17-0.95). Combination EQW+SGLT2i use also nominally significantly improved estimated eGFR slope compared with placebo (+ 1.94, 95% CI 0.94-2.94 mL/min/1.73 m2/year) and EQW alone (+ 2.38, 1.40-3.35 mL/min/1.73 m2/year). CONCLUSIONS: This post hoc analysis supports the hypothesis that combinatorial EQW and SGLT2i therapy may provide benefit on cardiovascular outcomes and mortality. Trial registration, Identifying number: NCT01144338, Date of registration: June 15, 2010.

Original publication




Journal article


Cardiovasc Diabetol

Publication Date





Cardiovascular outcomes, Combination therapy, Exenatide, GLP-1 receptor agonist, Propensity score matching, SGLT2 inhibitor, Type 2 diabetes mellitus, eGFR slope, Aged, Cardiovascular Diseases, Cause of Death, Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2, Drug Administration Schedule, Drug Therapy, Combination, Exenatide, Female, Glomerular Filtration Rate, Humans, Incretins, Kidney, Male, Middle Aged, Multicenter Studies as Topic, Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic, Risk Assessment, Risk Factors, Sodium-Glucose Transporter 2 Inhibitors, Time Factors, Treatment Outcome