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Trial shows blood pressure drugs can cut diabetes deaths

18 September, 2007

NHMRC CEO Professor Warwick Anderson has congratulated the George Institute for International Health (Sydney) on the success of a worldwide clinical trial showing that a combination of blood-pressure-lowering drugs can cut deaths from complications of type 2 diabetes by almost one-fifth.

"The NHMRC awarded over $230,000 in research funds to this world-leading project, and it is very satisfying to see it yield such significant results", Professor Anderson said.

The results of the trial, led by Professor Stephen MacMahon from the George Institute, were published recently in the prestigious medical journal The Lancet, and presented at the 2007 European Congress of Cardiology in Vienna overnight.

Over 11,000 patients with type 2 diabetes in 20 countries participated in the project, with an average participation period of 4.3 years.

Half received daily treatment with a single tablet containing a fixed combination of two blood-pressure-lowering drugs (perindopril and indapamide), and half received a placebo tablet.

The participants received the drugs in addition to any other therapies that they were receiving for diabetes.

The results showed that type 2 diabetes patients benefited from the blood-pressure-lowering treatment no matter whether their blood pressure was elevated or not to begin with.

"These results have worldwide implications for the treatment of type 2 diabetes", Professor Anderson said.