Wednesday January 29, 2020

Diabetes Medication to Reduce Heart Disease Shows Promise: Researchers

The results are applicable primarily to dapagliflozin, which was the predominant SGLT2 inhibitor used in Scandinavia during the study period

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diabetes
Diabetes is the ninth leading cause of death in women and claims 2.1 million female lives every year, more so than men. Pixabay

Researchers, including one of an Indian-origin, have shed light on how a class of medications that help regulate blood sugar for patients with Type 2 diabetes can also protect from heart disease.

The findings published in the journal Cell Metabolism, focus on the effect of diabetes medication — empagliflozin — on cell repair in blood vessels and the resulting risks of heart disease.

Empagliflozin is a medication that falls under a category of drugs called SGLT2 inhibitors, which lower blood sugar.

“We have seen large-scale clinical trials giving us clear evidence that SGLT2 inhibitors can also protect our patients who have diabetes from heart disease,” said Indian-origin researcher and study author Subodh Verma from St. Michael’s Hospital in Canada.

The research suggests that circulating progenitor cells — which are found in the bone marrow and play a role in heart health — along with inflammatory cells are regulated with this diabetes medication.

For patients who have diabetes are at the risk of heart disease, such medications may provide heart protection by relieving damaged cells that would otherwise perpetuate heart disease by causing faulty vessel repair.

Diabetes
According to the researchers, these novel findings may provide the basis for new therapies for patients who have heart disease complicated by diabetes. Pixabay

Using blood samples from the EMPA-HEART CardioLink-6 Trial, the research team was able to show that in diabetes, regenerative progenitor cells were reduced.

Patients who took empagliflozin, however, these progenitor cells were restored later.

“We found that in people with diabetes, not only were beneficial progenitor cells increased but we saw indications of reduced inflammation and oxidative stress, which can also contribute to cardiovascular disease,” said David Hess, Associate Professor at Western University.

According to the researchers, these novel findings may provide the basis for new therapies for patients who have heart disease complicated by diabetes.

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Earlier a research from Karolinska Institute in Sweden said that the new type of drugs for type 2 diabetes — SGLT2 inhibitors — are associated with a reduced risk of heart failure by 34 per cent.

The results are applicable primarily to dapagliflozin, which was the predominant SGLT2 inhibitor used in Scandinavia during the study period. (IANS)

Next Story

Children of Mothers With Diabetes Are Likely To Suffer From Heart Diseases, Says Study

The researchers also found higher rates for specific types of CVD children of mothers with diabetes

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Diabetes
Diabetes was categorised as pregestational (before pregnancy) or gestational (during pregnancy) and women with diabetic complications were identified in the Study. Pixabay

Children of mothers with diabetes have increased rates of early onset cardiovascular disease or CVD (conditions affecting the heart or blood vessels) from childhood up to the age of 40, the researchers have warned.

The increased rates were more pronounced among children of mothers with a history of CVD or diabetic complications, said the study published in the journal The BMJ.

“Our study provides evidence that children of mothers with diabetes, especially those with a history of CVD or with diabetic complications, had increased rates of early onset CVD throughout the early decades of life,” said study researchers from Aarhus University in Denmark.

If this association is shown to be causal, preventing, screening, and treating diabetes in women of childbearing age could be important not only for improving the health of the women but also for reducing long term risks of CVD in their offspring, the researchers added

The number of women diagnosed with diabetes before or during pregnancy has increased globally, and children of these women are more likely to have risk factors for future CVD, such as high blood pressure and high blood sugar levels. It is unclear, however, whether or to what extent exposure to diabetes in the womb increases the risk of developing CVD in offspring over a lifetime.

So an international team of researchers set out to evaluate associations between diabetes diagnosed before or during pregnancy and early onset CVD in children during their first four decades of life. They base their findings on national registry data for over 2.4 million children born without congenital heart disease in Denmark from 1977 to 2016.

Diabetes was categorised as pregestational (before pregnancy) or gestational (during pregnancy) and women with diabetic complications were identified.

Diabetes
Children of mothers with diabetes have increased rates of early onset cardiovascular disease or CVD (conditions affecting the heart or blood vessels) from childhood up to the age of 40, the researchers have warned. Pixabay

Other potentially influential factors, such as mother’s age, education, lifestyle and medical history were also taken into account. During up to 40 years of follow-up, children of mothers with diabetes had a 29 per cent increased overall rate of early onset CVD compared with children of mothers who did not have diabetes (cumulative risks: 17.8 per cent vs 13.1 per cent ).

The researchers also found higher rates for specific types of CVD children of mothers with diabetes, particularly heart failure (45 per cent), hypertensive disease (78 per cent), deep vein thrombosis (82 per cent), and pulmonary embolism (91 per cent).

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Increased rates were seen in each age group in childhood (before 20 years of age) and early adulthood (from 20 to 40 years of age), regardless of the type of diabetes they were exposed to (pregestational or gestational) and rates were similar for both type 1 and type 2 diabetes, the study said. (IANS)