Increased risk of MS in patients with type 2 diabetes over 45 years of age after exposure to antidiabetics

A new study from the University of Arizona for Health Sciences found that people over the age of 45 whose type 2 diabetes was treated with antihyperglycemic drugs had an increased risk of developing multiple sclerosis, particularly among women, while exposure to antihyperglycemics had an increased risk of developing multiple sclerosis. People under 45 years of age reduce this risk. .

Our findings reinforce the need for a precision medicine approach to prevent MS in these vulnerable populations.”

Kathleen Rodgers, PhD, principal investigator, associate director of translational neuroscience in the Center for Innovation in Brain Sciences

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is an unpredictable autoimmune neurological disorder that affects the central nervous system and leads to severe physical and cognitive impairment. It is estimated that approximately 1 million adults in the United States and more than 2.8 million worldwide are living with MS.

For people with type 2 diabetes, there is increasing evidence linking metabolic disorders and MS through a common driver of increased autoimmunity. This raises the question about the effect of anti-hyperglycemic therapies used to treat type 2 diabetes, including insulin, on the incidence of MS.

“Previous research has shown a neuroprotective effect of anti-hyperglycemic drugs in Alzheimer’s disease and other related dementias,” said Dr. Rodgers. “For MS, we wanted to further study the differences in age and sex, particularly between men and women under the age of 45 with type 2 diabetes.”

They found that men over the age of 45 had a slightly increased risk of developing MS and that women older than 45 showed a significantly increased incidence of MS after exposure to anti-hyperglycemic agents. In addition to age differences, a risk analysis by drug class showed that insulin exposure in patients over 45 years of age was associated with an increased risk compared to other therapies.

In patients younger than 45 years of age, exposure to antidiabetics was protective against the development of MS.

The study used a US-based insurance claims database of 151 million participants to identify more than 5 million patients with type 2 diabetes and early-onset or late-onset MS. The researchers divided the data according to the age of the patients Diagnosed with type 2 diabetes Before or after age 45 – and gender to decipher the factors that lead to risk of developing multiple sclerosis in both groups, particularly in women over 45 years of age.

The paper, “Age-sex differences in exposure to antihyperglycemic drugs and risk of newly diagnosed multiple sclerosis in patients with propensity score-matched type 2 diabetes mellitus,” was recently published in the journal Heliyon.

Co-authors from the Brain Science Center for Innovation are Roberta Diaz Brinton, Ph.D., Director and Regent Professor; Francesca Vitale, MD, research assistant professor of neurology; Georgina Turandel-Haro, Ph.D. candidate and graduate research assistant; and Gregory Branigan, MD, a third-year medical student at the Arizona College of Medicine-MD program in Tucson.


Journal reference:

Brannigan, G.L., et al. (2022) Age and sex differences in exposure to antihyperglycemic drugs and risk of newly diagnosed multiple sclerosis in a propensity score matched in patients with type 2 diabetes. Helion.

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