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New results from AstraZeneca’s Brilinta trial

Elisabeth Bjork

The Phase III THEMIS trial met its primary endpoint and demonstrated that Brilinta (ticagrelor), taken in conjunction with aspirin, showed a statistically-significant reduction in a composite of major adverse cardiovascular events (MACE) compared to aspirin alone.

THEMIS was conducted in over 19,000 patients with coronary artery disease (CAD) and type-2 diabetes (T2D) with no prior heart attack (myocardial infarction, MI) or stroke. Preliminary safety results were consistent with the known profile of Brilinta.

A potential benefit for this high-risk patient population

“Approaches to help reduce cardiovascular morbidity further in patients with coronary artery disease and type-2 diabetes are urgently needed. The positive result from the THEMIS trial may offer a potential benefit for this high-risk patient population,” said Elisabeth Björk, Senior Vice President, Head of late Cardiovascular, Renal and Metabolism, R&D BioPharmaceuticals.

“Patients who have both stable coronary artery disease and diabetes are a sizeable group which remains at particularly high risk of major adverse cardiac events. The optimal long-term antiplatelet therapy in that group is not fully established. We look forward to presenting the full results from the THEMIS trial later this year,” said Gabriel Steg, MD, THEMIS co-Chair and Professor at Université Paris-Diderot, Paris and Professor at the National Heart and Lung Institute, Imperial College, London.

About THEMIS

THEMIS(Effect of Ticagrelor on Health Outcomes in DiabEtes Mellitus Patients Intervention Study) is an AstraZeneca-sponsored, multi-national, randomised, double‑blinded trial in patients with CAD and T2D with no prior myocardial infarction or stroke. THEMIS was designed to test the hypothesis that Brilinta plus aspirin would reduce major adverse cardiovascular events (MACE), a composite of CV death, myocardial infarction or stroke, in patients with CAD and T2D with no prior myocardial infarction or stroke, vs. aspirin alone. CAD was defined as a prior percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI), bypass surgery or at least a 50% narrowing of a coronary artery.

The trial was initiated in early 2014, duration was event-driven across 42 countries and more than 19,000 patients were randomised in order to collect 1,385 independently-adjudicated primary endpoint events.

Photo of Elisabeth Björk: AstraZeneca