St. Joseph's part of drug trials to help diabetes patients
Jan Sims, CTV London
Published Tuesday, March 4, 2014 2:58PM EST
Heart disease and stroke are common worries for people with type 2 diabetes, but a new drug is showing promising results.
The drug is being tested in London and at some 1,200 centres around the world, an it could be an important tool for controlling diabetes and avoiding cardiovascular complications.
Bart DeVries has lived with type 2 diabetes for 17 years.
"I have a variety of medications - Metformin and GlucoNorm and some others twice a day, and insulin before bedtime."
But DeVries wants to help improve the treatment of diabetes for himself and others, so he's taking part in clinical trials at St. Joseph's Hospital for a new drug called Dapagliflozin.
Dr. Irene Hramiak; chair of the Centre for Diabetes at St. Joseph's says "Most people with diabetes struggle with getting perfectly normal blood sugars. And they're often high after they eat - so they have high blood sugars or hyperglycemia. So taking this tablet will help them get rid of some of those high blood sugars and give them an overall better balance to their blood sugars."
Currently the Metformin is widely prescribed as a frontline drug because it's effective in treating diabetes while managing heart health. It's hoped Dapagliflozin holds similar promise.
"Diabetes is a chronic disease and it's progressive. So it's unlikely that when you're diagnosed you're going to remain on the same therapy for a long period of time, so almost every year or every couple of years we have to add additional pills," Hramiak explains.
At St. Joseph's, 25 people are expected to take part in the study as part of a larger, worldwide clinical trial involving more than 17,000 patients.
If all goes well, the drug could be on the market sometime this year.