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22.03.2020 | Review Article

Pharmacokinetic/Pharmacodynamic Properties and Clinical Use of SGLT2 Inhibitors in Non-Asian and Asian Patients with Type 2 Diabetes and Chronic Kidney Disease

Clinical Pharmacokinetics
André J. Scheen


Chronic kidney disease is a prevalent complication of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). Sodium-glucose cotransporter type 2 inhibitors (SGLT2is) have a unique mode of action targeting the kidney. As their glucose-lowering potency declines with the reduction in estimated glomerular filtration rate, their clinical use in patients with T2DM with chronic kidney disease has been submitted to restriction. However, recent observations demonstrated that SGLT2is reduce the progression of renal impairment in patients with mild-to-moderate chronic kidney disease, with or without albuminuria. Furthermore, SGLT2is reduce the incidence of cardiovascular events in patients with T2DM at high cardiovascular risk, independently of baseline estimated glomerular filtration rate. Thus, recent guidelines recommend the prescription of SGLT2is in patients with T2DM with mild-to-moderate chronic kidney disease defined by an estimated glomerular filtration rate between ≥ 30 and < 90 mL/min/1.73 m2 and/or albuminuria. The present comprehensive review describes the pharmacokinetic/pharmacodynamic properties of SGLT2is commercialised worldwide and in Japan in patients with T2DM with mild, moderate and severe chronic kidney disease. Drug exposure increases when the estimated glomerular filtration rate declines but without a clear-cut relationship with the severity of chronic kidney disease and in a rather moderate amplitude that most often does not require a dose reduction in the presence of mild-to-moderate chronic kidney disease. The urinary glucose excretion steadily declines with the reduction in estimated glomerular filtration rate. This may explain a lower effect on glucose control, yet the positive effects on body weight and blood pressure still remain. The efficacy and safety of these SGLT2is are analysed among patients with stages 3a and 3b chronic kidney disease in placebo-controlled randomised clinical trials, with almost similar results in Asian and non-Asian individuals with T2DM. In summary, there is no reason not to prescribe SGLT2is in patients with T2DM with mild-to-moderate chronic kidney disease, especially if the aim is to benefit from cardiovascular and/or renal protection.

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