I have been attending the National Kidney Foundation (NKF): Spring Clinical Meetings this week in Orlando, FL. NKF is expecting over 2,500 attendees with a floor of about 40+ exhibitors participating. The conference offers attendees varying educational experiences, covering a broad array of topics, including new topics in dialysis care, clinical challenges, controversies in home dialysis, bundling, transplant medicine, guideline updates and new products in development.

One area of particular interest in this conference is the interplay between Type II diabetes and Chronic Kidney Disease. BioTrends 2012 ChartTrends U.S. studies find that nearly 40% of late stage CKD non-dialysis have Type II diabetes. Many nephrologists struggle with not only treating the patients? CKD itself, but also treating this common comorbidity.

At NKF, several sessions discussed advances in diabetes management. Recently Johnson & Johnson's Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Inc. gained US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval for its oral, once-daily, type II diabetes treatment, Invokana (canagliflozin). Invokana is the first in a new class of drugs called sodium glucose co-transporter 2 (SGLT2) inhibitors to gain approval in the U.S.

This product was mentioned at the conference in a few sessions, but because of the contraindication for patients with severe renal impairment (GFR <30) and patients on dialysis, one must consider how much this product will be used in the stage 4 and stage 5 patient populations. Regardless, there are still many patients treated in stage 3. In fact, our tracking studies indicate that on average, nephrologists are managing just over 300 stage 3 patients in the U.S. With a high percentage of them having Type II diabetes, Invokana could be an exciting new oral option to treat this common co-morbidity.

Rob Dubman, Director of Nephrology at BioTrends Research Group, led the webinar entitled Renal Anemia in Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD): Following the Omontys Recall in April 2013. Learn more about this webinar and gain access to recorded playback.

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