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American Diabetes Association, June 5-9

Last Updated: June 10, 2015.

The American Diabetes Association's 75th Scientific Sessions

The annual meeting of the American Diabetes Association (ADA) was held from June 5 to 9 in Boston and attracted approximately 14,000 participants from around the world, including clinicians, academicians, allied health professionals, and others interested in diabetes. The conference highlighted the latest advances in diabetes research and improving patient care, with presentations focusing on treatment recommendations and advances toward a cure for diabetes.

In the Evaluation of Lixisenatide in Acute Coronary Syndrome (ELIXA) study, Marc Pfeffer, M.D., Ph.D., of Harvard Medical and Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston, and colleagues found that lixisenatide was not associated with increased cardiovascular risk. The investigators followed 6,068 patients over a two-year period and found a reduction in hemoglobin A1C associated with lixisenatide as well as modest weight control.

In addition, according to Pfeffer, the investigators found no increased risk of hypoglycemia, pancreatitis, or pancreatic cancer. The impact on cardiovascular events, including heart failure, was neutral.

"There has been a cloud of suspicion over all new diabetes drugs, including GLP-1 agonists, over whether they may increase the risk for cardiovascular problems," Pfeffer said in a statement. "There has also been some hope that some of these drugs may improve cardiovascular health. GLP-1 receptor agonists were being used around the world while cardiovascular safety had yet to be established. This is the first report of a clinical trial designed to assess cardiovascular outcomes in this class of drugs and we have shown that patients and their health care providers should have no cause for concern, even if they are at high risk for heart-related problems."

The study was supported by Sanofi, the manufacturer of lixisenatide.

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In another study, Britt Rotberg, R.D.N., of the Emory School of Medicine in Atlanta, and colleagues found that food insecurity, worrying about not having enough to eat, lead to poorer glycemic control and poorer food choices in Latinos.

The investigators found that individuals with food insecurity had an average hemoglobin A1C of 9.9 percent, compared to 7.6 percent among those who felt they had a sufficient amount of food to survive. Individuals who were food insecure tended to consume fewer vegetables. The investigators found no differences in body mass index between those who had food insecurity and those who were food secure.

"We found that those patients who were food insecure had higher A1C levels and ate fewer vegetables," Rotberg said in a statement. "These findings underscore the importance of individualized diabetes management, and the need to take into account not only patients' socioeconomic status, but food availability, when discussing diabetes self-management. We should find new ways to help our food insecure patients obtain nutritionally adequate foods."

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During the conference, the ADA, the American Association of Diabetes Educators, and the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics provided a joint statement on diabetes self-management education. The position statement outlined when, how, and what type of Diabetes Self-Management Education and Support (DSME/S) should be offered to patients. The joint statement specifically outlined four critical times for assessing the need for DSME/S referral, including at diagnosis, yearly, when new complicating factors influence self-management, and when transitions in care occur.

"We have algorithms for when and how to advance medication for patients with diabetes, but there has never been an algorithm for starting and advancing self-management education," Margaret Powers, Ph.D., R.D., President-Elect, Health Care and Education, for the ADA, said in a statement. "If you ask clinicians when should diabetes education occur, you'll get a variety of answers. We needed a clear set of guiding principles for when to provide and how to assess a patient's needs for DSME/S."

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ADA: GLP-1 Receptor Agonists May Help Reduce Food Cravings

TUESDAY, June 9, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- GLP-1 receptor agonists may help reduce cravings and increase satisfaction while eating, according to research scheduled to be presented Tuesday at the annual meeting of the American Diabetes Association, held from June 5 to 9 in Boston.

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ADA: New Research Delves Into Genetic Risk for Obesity

TUESDAY, June 9, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- New research offers potential clues as to why children of obese mothers are at increased risk for obesity. The study was scheduled to be presented Tuesday at the annual meeting of the American Diabetes Association, held from June 5 to 9 in Boston.

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ADA: Trial Underway for BCG Vaccine in T1DM

TUESDAY, June 9, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Researchers are launching a clinical trial to investigate whether repeated injections of the tuberculosis vaccine bacille Calmette-Guérin (or BCG vaccine) holds promise as a treatment for type 1 diabetes. The researchers announced the start of their phase II trial Sunday at the annual meeting of the American Diabetes Association, held from June 5 to 9 in Boston.

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ADA: Sitagliptin Shows No Major Adverse CV Effects in T2DM, CVD

TUESDAY, June 9, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with diabetes and cardiovascular disease, the dipeptidyl peptidase 4 inhibitor sitagliptin does not appear to increase the risk of major adverse cardiovascular events, according to a study published online June 8 in the New England Journal of Medicine. The research was published to coincide with the annual meeting of the American Diabetes Association, held from June 5 to 9 in Boston.

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