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Liraglutide reduces cardiac adipose tissue in type 2 diabetes: A secondary analysis of the LIRAFLAME randomized placebo-controlled trial

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AIM: To test the hypothesis that treatment with liraglutide can reduce cardiac adipose tissue.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: LIRAFLAME is a randomized placebo-controlled, double-blind, parallel clinical study. Participants with type 2 diabetes were randomized to treatment with liraglutide 1.8 mg/d or placebo for 26 weeks. Computed tomography was performed at baseline and at end of treatment to evaluate the cardiac adipose tissue volume, quantified automatically. We report the results of a secondary endpoint evaluating changes in cardiac adipose tissue.

RESULTS: A total of 102 participants were randomly assigned to liraglutide (n = 51) or placebo (n = 51). At baseline, the mean (SD) cardiac adipose tissue volume was comparable between the liraglutide and the placebo group (232.6 [112.8] vs. 227.0 [103.2] mL; P = 0.80). The mean change in body weight was -3.7 (-4.8, -2.6) kg in the liraglutide and -0.18 (-0.76, 0.40) kg in the placebo group. From baseline to end of treatment the mean cardiac adipose tissue change was -11.5 (95% confidence interval -17.6, -5.4) mL in the liraglutide (P < 0.001) and -0.01 (-5.3, 5.3) mL in the placebo (P = 1.00) groups. The reduction in cardiac adipose tissue was significantly greater in the liraglutide compared to the placebo group (mean difference -11.4 [-19.4, -3.3] mL; P = 0.006), but significance was lost after adjustment for changes in body mass index (P = 0.46).

CONCLUSION: Treatment with liraglutide for 26 weeks was associated with a reduction in cardiac adipose tissue compared to placebo. The reduction was not independent of weight loss, suggesting that this is not a drug-specific effect.

Original languageEnglish
JournalDiabetes, Obesity and Metabolism
Issue number12
Pages (from-to)2651-2659
Number of pages9
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2021

Bibliographical note

© 2021 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

    Research areas

  • cardiovascular disease, diabetes complications, GLP-1, liraglutide, randomized trial, type 2 diabetes

ID: 67683392