Major ADVANCE for Type 2 Diabetics



    Blood pressure lowering drug (Pr)Coversyl(R) Plus reduces mortality in
    type 2 diabetics

    VIENNA, Austria, Sept. 4 /CNW/ - The routine administration of a fixed
combination of perindopril and indapamide (Coversyl Plus) improves survival
and reduces coronary and renal events in diabetics, according to the results
of the blood pressure-lowering arm of the landmark, five year ADVANCE(1)
(Action in Diabetes and Vascular Disease: Preterax and Diamicron MR Controlled
Evaluation) study presented Sunday at the European Society of Cardiology (ESC)
meeting and published online in The Lancet. In Canada, (Pr)Preterax(R) is
marketed under the brand name Coversyl Plus.
    ADVANCE is the first and largest trial ever performed with a fixed
combination antihypertensive in type 2 diabetic patients. The multicentre,
randomised, placebo-controlled study involved a total of 11,140 patients with
type 2 diabetes from 20 countries worldwide. There were 11 trial sites in
Canada with hundreds of enrolled patients. Patients included were both
normotensive and hypertensive and were already receiving most of the usual
treatments provided to patients with diabetes, including other blood pressure
lowering drugs.
    ADVANCE showed that Coversyl Plus significantly reduces total mortality
by 14 per cent (p=0.03) and the risk of cardiovascular death by 18 per cent
(p=0.03) compared to placebo. In addition, diabetes patients receiving
Coversyl Plus achieved a significant 14 per cent           (p=0.03) reduction
in total coronary events, including heart attacks, and a 21 per cent (p=0.01)
reduction in new or worsening kidney disease.
    "The results of ADVANCE will have a significant and immediate impact on
the management of type 2 diabetes patients in Canada and across the world,"
says Canadian lead investigator Dr. Pavel Hamet, Professor of Medicine, Canada
Research Chair, Predictive Genomics, Chief, Gene Medicine Services at Center
Hospitalier de L'Université de Montréal. "This treatment reduced the
likelihood of dying from the complications of diabetes by almost one-fifth,
with virtually no side-effects. These findings translate into one life saved
in every diabetes-treating physician's office in Canada each year."
    Coversyl Plus was chosen for the ADVANCE trial for its efficacy in blood
pressure lowering. In 2002, Coversyl Plus was approved in Canada for the
treatment of mild to moderate essential hypertension in patients for whom
combination therapy is appropriate.
    "I was diagnosed with high blood pressure when I was 14 and later found
out I also had type 2 diabetes," says ADVANCE study patient Janine Lemay.
"Four members of my family died from heart attacks and I believed that this
was how I was going to die as well. The results of the ADVANCE trial are very
important to me because Coversyl Plus is the only treatment that has managed
my high blood pressure. I now feel great and am able to enjoy my life again."
    Globally, there are approximately 250 million people with diabetes, most
of who will eventually die or be disabled by the complications of their
condition. In Canada, type 2 diabetes is one of the fastest growing diseases
with more than 60,000 new cases yearly.(2) Approximately 41,500 Canadians die
from type 2 diabetes complications annually.(3) Economically, diabetes and its
complications cost the Canadian healthcare system an estimated $13.2 billion
every year in direct and indirect costs, including physician care, medication,
long-term disability and early death.(3) The most common cause of death in
people with diabetes is heart disease. Kidney disease also affects a large
proportion. In 2006, the United Nations issued a statement calling for
increased international action to combat the global epidemic of diabetes.
    "Diabetes is emerging as one of the greatest 21st century threats to the
health of populations worldwide. The health gains seen in the ADVANCE study
have been obtained in addition to the benefits provided by patients' existing
treatment and if the benefits seen in ADVANCE were applied to just half the
population with diabetes worldwide, more than a million deaths would be
avoided over 5 years... there is now a case for considering routine treatment
with Coversyl Plus for patients with type 2 diabetes," comments Professor John
Chalmers, ADVANCE co-principal Investigator from the George Institute for
International Health, Sydney, Australia.
    The ADVANCE study was initiated and designed by the investigators and
co-sponsored by The George Institute for International Health and the
University of Sydney, and Servier. A second arm of the study, that sets out to
assess the risks and benefits of intensive glucose lowering using a gliclazide
MR-based regimen ((Pr)Diamicron(R) MR) will report later.

    About Coversyl Plus
    Coversyl Plus is a fixed-dose combination product of perindopril
erbumine, an angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitor, and indapamide, a
chlorosulphamoyl diuretic. It has been approved in Canada in 2002 for the
treatment of mild to moderate essential hypertension in patients for whom
combination therapy is appropriate. Coversyl Plus is not indicated for initial
therapy. Full prescribing information for Coversyl Plus is available upon
request from Servier Canada Inc.

    About Servier Canada Inc.
    Servier Canada Inc. (www.servier.ca) is a pharmaceutical company, based
in Laval (Quebec) that focuses on the development of therapies to treat
cardiovascular, metabolic and central nervous system diseases. It is the
Canadian subsidiary of the Servier Research Group, the leading French-based
independent (private) pharmaceutical company, which is present in 140
countries around the world.
    The Servier Research Group distinguishes itself by investing 25 per cent
of its income in research and development which is approximately double the
industry average. This enables the advancement of scientific knowledge and the
discovery of therapeutic innovations leading to improved patient care and
treatment outcomes.
    Coversyl Plus and Diamicron MR are registered products of Servier.

    ATTENTION TELEVISION ASSIGNMENT/PRODUCERS

    B-roll will be distributed via satellite feed at 11:00 - 11:30am ET and
    again at 2:00 - 2:30pm ET on September 4, 2007.

    The satellite feed co-ordinates are as follows:
    Anik F2C/7B @ 111.1 West
    Vertical Polarization, D/L Freq. 3980 MHz.
    Audio subcarriers 6.8 left, 6.2 right

    Also Available at Toronto T.O.C.
    SDI Router Position No. 42

    Note for editors:
    Perindopril / indapamide combinations are registered under the following
trade names: Preterax, BiPreterax, Preterax Forte, Biprel, Noliprel, Noliprel
Forte, Prelectal, Prelectal forte, Predonium, Noriplel, Coversyl Plus,
Coversyl Comp, Coversum Combi, Armix Comb, Prestarium Combi, Prestarium Plus.

    Reference:
    ------------------------
    (1) Data presented at a hotline session of the European Society of
    Cardiology meeting 2 September 2007
    (2) http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/iyh-vsv/diseases-maladies/diabete_e.html
    Accessed August 2007
    (3) http://www.diabetes.ca/Section_About/prevalence.asp
    Accessed August 2007




For further information:

For further information: Fiona Robinson, Hill and Knowlton Canada, (416)
413-4737, fiona.robinson@hillandknowlton.ca

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SERVIER CANADA INC.

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