New Diabetes Drugs Won’t Raise Heart Attack Risk – But Also Won’t Reduce Risk As Hoped

Diabetes Rises Sharply in China, Touching ‘Alert’ Level

Study Says Pregnant Women Drinking Less

“While it is reassuring that evidence does not suggest (cardiovascular concerns), it is disappointing that none of these therapies provide CV benefit,” Dr. Sanjay Kaul, a cardiologist at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles who co-wrote a commentary of the studies, said to the Wall Street Journal . The heart safety associated with these drugs, so-called “dipeptidyl peptidase 4 inhibitors (DPP-4),” had been largely unclear, according to the researchers. While the drug’s overall had safe profiles, one of the trials found an elevated risk of hospitalization for heart failure that may give some pause. The two safety studies involved a new class of drugs aimed at treating a chronic disease that as many as 26 million Americans may have, Type 2 diabetes . People with Type 2 diabetes either do not produce enough insulin to break down sugar (glucose) or the insulin that is present is ignored by cells.
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In the United States, about 11.3 percent of people over 20 have diabetes according to 2011 data from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The disease was more prevalent in China than in the United States even though the population was thinner — average body mass index, a ratio of height and body weight, was just 23.7 in China compared to 28.7 in the United States. “The prevalence of diabetes has increased significantly in recent decades,” said the JAMA study. “These data suggest that diabetes may have reached an alert level in the Chinese general population, with the potential for a major epidemic of diabetes-related complications, including cardiovascular disease, stroke, and chronic kidney disease in China in the near future without an effective national intervention.” Only 30 percent of Chinese with diabetes were aware of their condition, it said. Further, about half of the population has high blood sugar, or a condition known as prediabetes, according to a nationally representative sample of Chinese adults.
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Juvenile Diabetes Cure Alliance Report: Major Diabetes Charities Failing to Report on Cure Progress

Each nonprofit was ranked in each category and given an overall STAR rating: JDRF was awarded two stars, the highest rating out of all four organizations. The organization fared best in the strategy, utilization and transparency categories. Accountability is lacking, however, as the JDRF fails to discuss goals or regularly review its research portfolio. The American Diabetes Association received 1.5 stars overall. The charitys annual reports do not thoroughly review research strategies and results and are not released within 90 days after the years end. Although donors prioritize cure research, nearly 60 percent of funds go toward information, awareness and advocacy.
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