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Heart failure: LCZ696 cut cardiovascular deaths by 20% versus Enalapril, an Ace inhibitor

LCZ696 has shown to be superior to Ace inhibitor Enalapril ( Enapren ) on key endpoints in the largest heart failure study ever done. In PARADIGM-HF patients with heart failure with reduced ejection fraction ( HF-REF ) who were given LCZ696 were more likely to be alive and less likely to have been hospitalized for sudden deterioration of their heart failure than those given Ace inhibitor Enalapril ( Enapren ). Patients received LCZ696 or Enalapril on top of current best treatment.

The magnitude of benefit with LCZ696 against Enalapril in HF-REF patients was highly statistically significant and clinically important.
In the study, the benefit of LCZ696 was seen early, was sustained and was consistent across subgroups. LCZ696: reduced the risk of death from cardiovascular causes by 20% ( p=0.00004 ); reduced heart failure hospitalizations by 21% ( p=0.00004 ); reduced the risk of all-cause mortality by 16% ( p=0.0005 ).

Overall there was a 20% risk reduction on the primary endpoint, a composite measure of cardiovascular death or heart failure hospitalization ( p=0.0000002 ).

LCZ696, a twice a day tablet being investigated for heart failure, has a unique mode of action which is thought to reduce the strain on the failing heart. It acts to enhance the protective neurohormonal systems of the heart ( NP system ) while simultaneously suppressing the harmful system ( the RAAS ).
Currently available medicines for HF-REF work only to block the detrimental effects. Despite existing therapies, the mortality rate remains very high with up to 50% of patients dying within 5 years of a diagnosis of heart failure. Approximately half of patients with heart failure have HF-REF.

Analysis of the safety data from PARADIGM-HF showed side effects were manageable in the study. Fewer patients on LCZ696 discontinued study medication for any adverse event compared to those on Enalapril ( 10.7% vs 12.3%, respectively, p=0.03 ).
The LCZ696 group had more hypotension and non-serious angioedema but less renal impairment, hyperkalemia and cough than the Enalapril group.

PARADIGM-HF is a randomized, double-blind, phase III study evaluating the efficacy and safety profile of LCZ696 versus Enalapril in 8,442 patients with HF-REF.
The baseline characteristics showed the patients enrolled were typical HF-REF patients with NYHA Class II-IV heart failure.
PARADIGM-HF was specifically designed to see if LCZ696 could decrease cardiovascular mortality by at least 15% versus Enalapril. Patients received LCZ696 or Enalapril in addition to current best treatment regimen.
The primary endpoint is a composite of time to first occurrence of either cardiovascular death or heart failure hospitalization, and is the largest heart failure study ever done.
Secondary endpoints are change in the clinical summary score for heart failure symptoms and physical limitations ( as assessed by Kansas City Cardiomyopathy Questionnaire ) at 8 months; time to all-cause mortality; time to new onset atrial fibrillation; and time to occurrence of renal dysfunction.
PARADIGM-HF was initiated in December 2009 and in March 2014 the Data Monitoring Committee confirmed that patients given LCZ696 were significantly less likely to die from cardiovascular causes, leading to the trial being stopped early. The DMC also confirmed the primary endpoint had been met.

LCZ696 is an ARNI ( Angiotensin Receptor Neprilysin Inhibitor ) and has a unique mode of action which is thought to reduce the strain on the failing heart. It harnesses the body's natural defences against heart failure, simultaneously acting to enhance the levels of natriuretic and other endogenous vasoactive peptides, while also inhibiting the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system.

Heart failure is a debilitating and potentially life-threatening disease in which the heart cannot pump enough blood around the body. Symptoms such as breathlessness, fatigue and fluid retention can appear slowly and worsen over time, significantly impacting quality of life. ( Xagena )

Source: Novartis, 2014