Effect of Febuxostat on Ambulatory Blood Pressure in Subjects With Hyperuricemia and Hypertension: A Phase 2 Randomized Placebo-Controlled Study

Lhanoo Gunawardhana, Lachy McLean, Henry A Punzi, Barbara Hunt, Robert N Palmer, Andrew Whelton, Daniel I Feig
Journal of the American Heart Association 2017 November 4, 6 (11)

BACKGROUND: Hyperuricemia is associated with hypertension, with elevated serum uric acid levels postulated to have a causal role in the development of hypertension. Consequently, serum uric acid reduction may help lower blood pressure (BP). A Phase 2, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial was conducted to assess the potential BP-lowering effects of the xanthine oxidase inhibitor febuxostat in subjects with hypertension and hyperuricemia (serum uric acid ≥0.42 mmol/L [≥7.0 mg/dL]).

METHODS AND RESULTS: Subjects (n=121) were randomized 1:1 to febuxostat 80 mg once daily or to placebo. The primary end point was change from baseline to Week 6 in 24-hour mean ambulatory systolic BP (SBP). Additional end points included the following: change from baseline to Week 3 in 24-hour mean SBP and changes from baseline to Weeks 3 and 6 in 24-hour mean ambulatory diastolic BP, serum uric acid, mean daytime and nighttime ambulatory SBP/diastolic BP, and clinic SBP/diastolic BP. For the overall study population, there were no significant differences between febuxostat and placebo for changes from baseline to Weeks 3 or 6 in ambulatory, daytime or nighttime, or clinic SBP or diastolic BP. However, in a preplanned subgroup analysis, there was a significant decrease in SBP from baseline to Week 6 in subjects with normal renal function (estimated glomerular filtration rate ≥90 mL/min) treated with febuxostat versus placebo; least squares mean difference, -6.7; 95% confidence interval -13.3 to -0.0; P =0.049.

CONCLUSIONS: This study suggests that febuxostat may lower BP in hyperuricemic patients with hypertension and normal renal function; further studies should be conducted to confirm this finding.

CLINICAL TRIAL REGISTRATION: URL: Unique identifier: NCT01496469.

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