Drug Therapy

Chicago, IL—Sorafenib (Nexavar) has become the first drug in years to prove effective in the treatment of differentiated thyroid cancer (DTC) that has become resistant to radioactive iodine, according to phase 3 study results that were reported at the ASCO 2013 meeting.

DTC is the most common subtype of thyroid cancer, and its incidence is rising. DTC is rarely fatal, although up to 15% of patients become resistant to the current standard of care, radioactive iodine, and can die from the malignancy.

Chicago, IL—Adding bevacizumab (Avastin) to standard chemotherapy improves overall survival (OS) in women with metastatic or relapsed cervical cancer, representing the first instance in which a targeted therapy has significantly prolonged OS in this patient population.

Chicago, IL—At a plenary session of ASCO 2013, investigators of the phase 3 Radiation Therapy Oncology Group (RTOG) 0825 trial reported that bevacizumab (Avastin) did not improve overall survival (OS) in patients with newly diagnosed glioblastoma, but it did extend progression-free survival (PFS).

San Diego, CA—Linagliptin—a dipeptidyl peptidase (DPP)-4 inhibitor—was as effective as glimepiride in lowering blood glucose in patients with type 2 diabetes, and the newer drug demonstrated some safety advantages over glimepiride. It was associated with a lower incidence of hypoglycemia, fewer cardiovascular events, and weight loss instead of weight gain. These were 2-year data from an industry-sponsored, randomized, double-blind, noninferiority study comparing linagliptin with glimepiride in patients with type 2 diabetes inadequately controlled with metformin.

San Diego, CA—Initiating treatment with a sulfonylurea was associated with a 33% greater likelihood of sustaining a cardiovascular event and a shorter time to sustaining a cardiovascular event compared with metformin in older adults with type 2 diabetes, according to a retrospective analysis presented at the 2011 Scientific Sessions of the American Diabetes Association. Older age and being male were associated with an increase in cardiovascular events.

San Diego, CA—Adding saxagliptin to metformin instead of increasing the dose of metformin significantly improves levels of hemoglobin (Hb)A1c, fasting plasma glucose, and postprandial glucose in patients with type 2 diabetes who demonstrate inadequate glycemic control despite receiving a stable dose of metformin, according to the results of a randomized, open-label study presentedat the 71st Scientific Sessions of the American Diabetes Association.

San Diego, CA—The investigational once-weekly form of exenatide (Bydureon) was equally effective to metformin, slightly less effective than pioglitazone, and significantly superior to sitagliptin in achieving glycemic control in drug-naïve patients with type 2 diabetes not adequately controlled with diet and exercise in the 26-week DURATION-4 study.

San Diego, CA—Patients with type 2 diabetes who only take oral antidiabetic drugs report a more favorable treatment experience than those taking insulin, said Richard R. Rubin, MD, Professor of Medicine and Pediatrics, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD, at the 2011 Scientific Sessions of the American Diabetes Association.

San Diego, CA—More than half of patients with type 2 diabetes being treated with insulin to control glycemia discontinue it after hospital discharge.

The Standards of Medical Care in Diabetes—2011 guideline from the American Diabetes Association (ADA) states that insulin therapy is the preferred method of glycemic control in most clinical situations in the hospital setting, note the researchers of a retrospective medical records review presented at the 2011 Scientific Sessions of the ADA.

San Diego, CA—Insulin degludec, an investigational ultra-long-acting insulin, achieved comparable lowering of plasma glucose compared with long-acting insulin glargine, according to 2 phase 3, 52-week, “treat-to-target” clinical trials: one in type 2 diabetes and one in type 1 diabetes.

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  • Value-Based Care in Rheumatology
  • Rheumatology Practice Management
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