Glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor agonists versus sodium-glucose cotransporter inhibitors for treatment of T2DM

Alexis McKee, Ali Al-Khazaali, Stewart G. Albert

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8 Scopus citations


Context. Cardiovascular outcome trials (CVOT) of glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor agonists (GLP-1 RA) and sodium-glucose cotransporter 2 inhibitors (SGLT2i) demonstrated reduction of major adverse cardiovascular events (MACE), cardiovascular deaths (CVD), and renal outcomes. Objective. Assist in the prescribing decision regarding severity of illness and risk for adverse events. Design. Meta-analysis of the major CVOT and previous meta-analyses. Main Outcome Measures. Six trials of GLP-1 RA (51 762 subjects) and 4 trials of SGLT2i (33 457 subjects) showed both drug classes reduced MACE and CVD versus controls, with neither class preferred (comparison GLP1-RA vs SGLT2i: relative rate [rr] MACE 1.04, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.94, 1.16, P = ns; rr CVD 1.04, 95% CI 0.87, 1.24, P = ns). Hospitalization for heart failure (HHF) improved with SGLT2i (rr 0.68, CI 0.61, 0.76, P < 0.001) but not with GLP-1 RA, (rr 0.93, CI 0.86,1.03, P = ns). Meta-regression suggested benefits of the SGLT2i on CVD and HHF were accentuated with the underlying rate of MACE in the cohort (i.e., >10 events/1000pt*year). GLP-1 RA and SGLT2i showed reduction in renal outcomes (GLP-1 RA rr 0.83, CI 0.75, 0.91, p ≤ 0.001, SGLT2i rr 0.67, CI 0.57, 0.79, P < 0.001) without a preferential difference (GLP-1 RA vs SGLT2i, rr 1.24, CI 0.95, 1.61, P = ns; relative difference (rd) 0.005, CI -0.011, 0.021, P = ns). Serious adverse events for SGLT2i were mycotic genital infections in women (number needed to harm [NNH] = 13 and diabetic ketoacidosis NNH = 595. Gastrointestinal intolerance was the serious adverse event in the GLP1-RA class (NNH = 35). Conclusion. GLP-1 RA and SGLT2i classes showed similar reduction in MACE, CVD, and renal outcomes. SGLT2i have advantages over GLP-1 RA in reduction in HHF.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of the Endocrine Society
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1 2020


  • GLP1 receptor agonists
  • Meta-analysis
  • SGLT2 inhibitors
  • Type 2 diabetes mellitus


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