Safety of incretin-based therapies for type 2 diabetes

Timothy M E Davis
Med J Aust 2011; 195 (6): . || doi: 10.5694/mja11.10648
Published online: 19 September 2011

Australian database linkages could be used for postmarketing surveillance of antidiabetic therapy side effects

Several incretin hormone-based therapies for type 2 diabetes are marketed in Australia. These are exenatide (the glucagon-like peptide-1 [GLP-1] analogue) and sitagliptin, vildagliptin and saxagliptin (inhibitors of the enzyme dipeptidyl-peptidase-4 [DPP-4]). These drugs are attractive because they improve blood glucose control without weight gain and with less hypoglycaemia than insulin and its secretagogues. Their distinct mode of action means that they improve glycaemic control when added to more established blood glucose-lowering therapies. This underlies their current Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme listing as part of dual or, in the case of exenatide, triple therapy with metformin and/or sulfonylurea treatment.

  • Timothy M E Davis

  • University of Western Australia, Fremantle, WA.



I am supported by a Practitioner Fellowship from the National Health and Medical Research Council.

Competing interests:

I have served on advisory boards for Merck Sharp and Dohme (MSD), Novartis and Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMS), companies which market DPP-4 inhibitors in Australia, and Novo Nordisk, which manufactures liraglutide. I have had attendance costs for sacientific meetings covered by MSD and Novartis, and have received lecture fees from MSD, Novartis, BMS and Novo Nordisk.


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