Effects of empagliflozin on progression of chronic kidney disease: a prespecified secondary analysis from the empa-kidney trial.

Document Type


Publication Date


Publication Title

Lancet Diabetes Endocrinol


washington; spokane; Humans; Albuminuria; Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2; Kidney; Renal Insufficiency, Chronic; Sodium-Glucose Transporter 2 Inhibitors; Glomerular Filtration Rate


BACKGROUND: Sodium-glucose co-transporter-2 (SGLT2) inhibitors reduce progression of chronic kidney disease and the risk of cardiovascular morbidity and mortality in a wide range of patients. However, their effects on kidney disease progression in some patients with chronic kidney disease are unclear because few clinical kidney outcomes occurred among such patients in the completed trials. In particular, some guidelines stratify their level of recommendation about who should be treated with SGLT2 inhibitors based on diabetes status and albuminuria. We aimed to assess the effects of empagliflozin on progression of chronic kidney disease both overall and among specific types of participants in the EMPA-KIDNEY trial.

METHODS: EMPA-KIDNEY, a randomised, controlled, phase 3 trial, was conducted at 241 centres in eight countries (Canada, China, Germany, Italy, Japan, Malaysia, the UK, and the USA), and included individuals aged 18 years or older with an estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) of 20 to less than 45 mL/min per 1·73 m

FINDINGS: Between May 15, 2019, and April 16, 2021, 6609 participants were randomly assigned and then followed up for a median of 2·0 years (IQR 1·5-2·4). Prespecified subgroups of eGFR included 2282 (34·5%) participants with an eGFR of less than 30 mL/min per 1·73 m

INTERPRETATION: Empagliflozin slowed the rate of progression of chronic kidney disease among all types of participant in the EMPA-KIDNEY trial, including those with little albuminuria. Albuminuria alone should not be used to determine whether to treat with an SGLT2 inhibitor.

FUNDING: Boehringer Ingelheim and Eli Lilly.

Clinical Institute

Kidney & Diabetes