Adding canagliflozin to insulin therapy improves glycemic control and decreases body weight, according to new research.
The study, conducted at the University of Sydney and the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital in Australia, randomly assigned different levels of canagliflozin to a group of type 2 diabetes patients, all of whom were receiving insulin.
The patients were either given a placebo, 100mg of canagliflozi, or 300mg of canagliflozin. The researchers wanted to assess the safety and effectiveness of the drug on type 2 patients using insulin. Changes in HbA1c levels were also recorded.
Compared with the patients given the placebo, the patients given canagliflozin demonstrated significantly reduced HbA1c levels at week 18. Reductions were also seen at week 52. Both active treatment groups had lower body weight and reduced fasting plasma glucose levels. There were similar improvements after 52 weeks.
Canagliflozin did increase HDL cholesterol levels. Patients receiving 300mg had increased levels after 18 and 52 weeks, while those receiving 100mg only had increased cholesterol levels after 52 weeks.
In summary, canagliflozin improved HbA1c levels and helped patients to lose weight. In addition, the drug increased levels of HDL cholesterol (often known as the “good cholesterol”, it reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease by removing “bad” cholesterol from the bloodstream). On the other hand, patients taking canagliflozin reported more “adverse effects,” including genital mycotic infections.
The researchers explained: “In conclusio, canagliflozin appears to offer significant benefits when used in conjunction with insulin therapy. However, additional data are required for the subset of patients using insulin, and for patients with diabetes more broadly, to objectively define the effects of canagliflozin on major clinical outcomes.”

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