Fenofibrate Therapy More Beneficial in Women With Type 2 Diabetes

(HealthDay News) — For patients with type 2 diabetes, fenofibrate is effective in women, improving their lipoprotein profile more than in men, according to a study published online in Diabetologia.

Michael C. d’Emden, PhD, from the Royal Brisbane Hospital in Australia, and colleagues examined sex-related differences in the impact of fenofibrate on major cardiovascular (CV) events in type 2 diabetes. Data were included from 3,657 women and 6,138 men with type 2 diabetes, not using statins, who were allocated to fenofibrate or placebo for a 5-year period.

The researchers found that, in both sexes, baseline total cholesterol, LDL, HDL, non-HDL, apolipoproteins A-I and B, and triacylglycerol levels improved with fenofibrate (all P<.001). 

In women, fenofibrate induced greater reductions in total cholesterol, LDL, non-HDL, and apolipoprotein B (all P<.001), irrespective of menopausal status and statin intake. 

Fenofibrate reduced total CV outcomes by 30% and 13%, respectively, in women and men (P=.008 and 0.07, respectively), after adjustment for confounders, with no indication of a treatment-by-sex interaction (P>.1). 

Among patients with high triacylglycerol levels and low HDL, there were cardiac outcome reductions of 30% and 24% in women and men, respectively, with fenofibrate, with no indication of treatment-by-sex interaction (P>.1).

“Both sexes with type 2 diabetes should be considered for fenofibrate therapy for cardioprotection,” the researchers wrote.

Several authors disclosed financial ties to Abbott Pharmaceuticals, which partially funded the study.


  1. d’Emden MC et al. Diabetologia. 2014;doi:10.1007/s00125-014-3344-3.