Indirect comparison of glucagon like peptide-1 receptor agonists regarding cardiovascular safety and mortality in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus: network meta-analysis


Osamah M Alfayez 1, Omar A Almohammed 2, Omar S Alkhezi 1, Abdulaali R Almutairi 3, Majed S Al Yami 4

Main idea: The GLP1RAs have shown significant benefits in terms of CV safety. The indirect comparison and ranking probability results have shown that one weekly semaglutide and oral semaglutide seems to be the preferred option in patients with T2DM and established or at high risk of CVD. This result can aid health care providers, pharmacy and therapeutics committees in hospitals, and insurance companies when deciding which GLP1RA to start or add to their formulary.


Background: The cardiovascular outcome trials (CVOTs) have shown that glucagon like peptide-1 receptor agonists (GLP1RAs) have varying degrees of cardiovascular (CV) safety in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM.) The lack of any head-to-head comparative trials among GLP1RAs urged the need for an indirect comparison of these agents. Therefore, this study was conducted to indirectly compare the CV safety and mortality effects among different GLP1RAs in patients with T2DM using network meta-analysis (NMA).

Methods: Medline was searched to identify GLP1RA CVOTs to date. The outcomes of interest were CV death, myocardial infarction (IM), stroke, and death from any cause. An NMA with binomial likelihood logit link model was used for the binary outcomes. We conducted both fixed effects and random effects models for each outcome, and selected the best model based on the deviance information and the average posterior residual deviance. This NMA was reported in accordance with the preferred reporting items for systematic reviews and meta-analyses (PRISMA-NMA).

Results: A total of seven GLP1RA CVOTs were included having 56,004 patients. oral semaglutide was statistically better than exenatide (OR 0.47, 95% CI 0.21-0.99) in reducing CV death events. No significant differences were detected between most of the treatments regarding reducing death from any cause, MI and stroke events. The ranking results showed that oral semglamutide had the highest probability to be ranked first.


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