Efficacy and safety of once-Weekly semaglutide versus exenatide ER in subjects with type 2 diabetes (SUSTAIN 3): A 56-Week, open-Label, randomized clinical trial

Andrew J. Ahmann, Matthew Capehorn, Guillaume Charpentier, Francesco Dotta, Elena Henkel, Ildiko Lingvay, Anders G. Holst, Miriam P. Annett, Vanita R. Aroda

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102 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVE To compare the efficacy and safety of once-weekly semaglutide 1.0 mg s.c. with exenatide extended release (ER) 2.0 mg s.c. in subjects with type 2 diabetes. RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS In this phase 3a, open-label, parallel-group, randomized controlled trial, 813 subjects with type 2 diabetes taking oral antidiabetic drugs were randomized (1:1) to semaglutide 1.0 mg or exenatide ER 2.0 mg for 56 weeks. The primary end point was change from baseline in HbA1c at week 56. RESULTS Mean HbA1c (8.3% [67.7 mmol/mol] at baseline) was reduced by 1.5% (16.8 mmol/mol) with semaglutide and 0.9% (10.0 mmol/mol) with exenatide ER (estimated treatment difference vs. exenatide ER [ETD] –0.62% [95% CI –0.80, –0.44] [–6.78 mmol/mol (95% CI –8.70, –4.86)]; P < 0.0001 for noninferiority and superiority). Mean body weight (95.8 kg at baseline) was reduced by 5.6 kg with semaglutide and 1.9 kg with exenatide ER (ETD –3.78 kg [95% CI –4.58, –2.98]; P < 0.0001). Significantly more subjects treated with semaglutide (67%) achieved HbA1c <7.0% (<53 mmol/mol) versus those taking exenatide ER (40%). Both treatments had similar safety profiles, but gastrointestinal adverse events were more common in semaglutide-treated subjects (41.8%) than in exenatide ER–treated subjects (33.3%); injection-site reactions were more frequent with exenatide ER (22.0%) than with semaglutide (1.2%). CONCLUSIONS Semaglutide 1.0 mg was superior to exenatide ER 2.0 mg in improving glycemic control and reducing body weight after 56 weeks of treatment; the drugs had comparable safety profiles. These results indicate that semaglutide treatment is highly effective for subjects with type 2 diabetes who are inadequately controlled on oral antidiabetic drugs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)258-266
Number of pages9
JournalDiabetes Care
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1 2018


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Advanced and Specialized Nursing

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