, Volume 49, Issue 4, pp 243-254
Date: 25 Sep 2011

Efficacy of renin-angiotensin system (RAS) blockers on cardiovascular and renal outcomes in patients with type 2 diabetes

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Abstract

Cardiovascular disease is the predominant cause of morbidity in people with type 2 diabetes. Hypertension frequently coexists with diabetes and substantially increases the risk of developing end-organ damage. Controlling hypertension in patients with diabetes is therefore critical to reducing microvascular and macrovascular complications. Agents that block the renin-angiotensin system are increasingly used in patients with diabetes based on their cardiovascular and renoprotective effects, in addition to their direct effects on reducing blood pressure. Telmisartan, an angiotensin II receptor blocker (ARB), has a number of distinguishing pharmacological properties such as having the longest half-life and highest lipophilicity in its class. The ONgoing Telmisartan Alone and in combination with Ramipril Global Endpoint Trial (ONTARGET®) trial showed that telmisartan reduces cardiovascular morbidity (including myocardial infarction and stroke) in subjects with a broad spectrum of cardiovascular risk factors, including type 2 diabetes. Telmisartan is the only ARB indicated for the reduction of cardiovascular morbidity in patients with diabetes and end-organ damage, as well as in patients without diabetes but with a history of coronary artery disease, peripheral artery disease, or previous stroke. Trials of telmisartan in patients with diabetes and varying degrees of nephropathy also suggest that this drug can slow the progression of renal disease, an effect that appears to be at least partly independent of reduction in blood pressure. Telmisartan is therefore an important therapeutic option for optimizing cardiovascular and renal protection in the type 2 diabetic population.