Novel therapies for diabetic kidney disease

Kidney Int Suppl (2011). 2018 Jan;8(1):18-25. doi: 10.1016/j.kisu.2017.10.005. Epub 2017 Dec 29.


Over the past 30 years there have been many complementary therapies developed to achieve glycemic control and have an impact on cardiovascular outcomes, as well as reduce the risk of microvascular disease. The 2 most notable new entries have been the sodium-glucose cotransporter 2 (SGLT2) inhibitors and the glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) agonists. Both these classes of agents have demonstrated reductions in cardiovascular event rates as well as reductions in blood pressure and weight. Moreover, while both have demonstrated a benefit in slowing nephropathy progression, the SGLT2 inhibitors appear to have a significantly greater effect compared with the GLP-1 agents. There is an ongoing trial specifically powered for renal disease progression, CREDENCE (Evaluation of the Effects of Canagliflozin on Renal and Cardiovascular Outcomes in Participants With Diabetic Nephropathy). Additionally, there are 2 other classes of agents being tested to slow nephropathy progression, a selective endothelin-1 receptor antagonist, atrasantan, in the SONAR (Study of Diabetic Nephropathy With Atrasentan) trial and a nonsteroidal mineralocorticoid receptor antagonist, finerenone, in the FIDELIO (Efficacy and Safety of Finerenone in Subjects With Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus) trial. These and other studies are discussed.

Keywords: SGLT2 inhibition; cardiovascular; diabetic kidney disease; endothelin; heart failure; incretin; inflammation; mineralocorticoid; uric acid.

Publication types

  • Review