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Open Access Research article

A randomized controlled trial of the efficacy and safety of twice-daily saxagliptin plus metformin combination therapy in patients with type 2 diabetes and inadequate glycemic control on metformin monotherapy

Judith L White1*, Patricia Buchanan2, Jia Li3 and Robert Frederich3

Author Affiliations

1 Holston Medical Group, 105 W. Stone Drive, 37660 Kingsport, TN, USA

2 Willamette Valley Clinical Studies, Eugene, OR, USA

3 Bristol-Myers Squibb, Lawrenceville, NJ, USA

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BMC Endocrine Disorders 2014, 14:17  doi:10.1186/1472-6823-14-17

Published: 24 February 2014

Abstract

Background

To compare the safety and efficacy of saxagliptin 2.5 mg twice daily (BID) versus placebo add-on therapy to metformin immediate release (IR) in patients with type 2 diabetes and inadequate glycemic control with metformin alone.

Methods

This multicenter, 12-week, double-blind, parallel-group trial enrolled adult outpatients with type 2 diabetes (glycated hemoglobin [HbA1c] 7.0%–10.0%) on stable metformin IR monotherapy (≥1500 mg, BID for ≥8 weeks). Patients were randomized to double-blind saxagliptin 2.5 mg BID or placebo added on to metformin IR following a 2-week, single-blind, placebo add-on therapy lead-in period. The primary end point was the change from baseline to week 12 in HbA1c. Key secondary end points included change from baseline to week 12 in fasting plasma glucose (FPG) and the proportion of patients achieving HbA1c <7.0% or HbA1c ≤ 6.5% at week 12. Efficacy was analyzed in all patients who received randomized study drug with ≥1 postbaseline assessment. Safety was assessed in all treated patients.

Results

In total, 74 patients were randomized to double-blind saxagliptin add-on therapy and 86 to placebo add-on therapy. At week 12, least-squares mean changes (95% CI) from baseline HbA1c (adjusted for baseline HbA1c) were significantly greater (P = 0.006) in the saxagliptin + metformin group -0.56% (-0.74% to -0.38%) versus the placebo + metformin group -0.22% (-0.39% to -0.06%). Adjusted mean changes from baseline in FPG were numerically greater with saxagliptin versus placebo; the difference (95% CI) -9.5 mg/dL (-21.7 to 2.7) was not statistically significant (P = 0.12). A numerically greater proportion of patients in the saxagliptin group than the placebo group achieved HbA1c < 7.0% (37.5% vs 24.2%) or HbA1c ≤6.5% (24.6% vs 10.7%). There were no unexpected safety findings. Hypoglycemia occurred in 4 patients (5.4%) in the saxagliptin group and 1 patient (1.2%) in the placebo group; confirmed hypoglycemia (symptoms plus fingerstick glucose ≤50 mg/dL) occurred in 1 patient in the placebo group.

Conclusions

Addition of saxagliptin 2.5 mg BID to metformin therapy in patients with type 2 diabetes and inadequate glycemic control on metformin monotherapy reduced HbA1c compared with placebo added to metformin, with an adverse events profile similar to placebo and no unexpected safety findings.

Trial registration

ClinicalTrials.gov NCT00885378

Keywords:
Incretin; Dipeptidyl peptidase-4 inhibitor; Saxagliptin; Metformin; Combination therapy; Diabetes; Glycemic control; Hypoglycemia; Twice-daily