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Salsalate Shows Encouraging Results in Trial Led by Joslin Scientists

Drs. Steven Shoelson and Allison Goldfine

Drs. Steven Shoelson and Allison Goldfine

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Clinical studies of a generic drug called salsalate, widely prescribed for arthritis, now provide promising early results that the drug may be useful for the treatment of patients with type 2 diabetes as well. In a three-month trial led by Joslin Diabetes Center researchers, those who took salsalate showed significantly improved blood glucose levels.

Starting off, the patients all had levels of hemoglobin A1C (a standard measurement that reflects blood sugar levels over several months) in the range of 7.0 to 9.5%. A significant number of those who took salsalate saw this number drop by 0.5%, a result that is in the range of several recently released diabetes therapeutics. Other tests related to glucose levels also showed substantial improvement.

“These results are exciting,” says Allison Goldfine, M.D., Joslin’s Director of Clinical Research and an Associate Professor at Harvard Medical School. “They indicate that salsalate may provide an effective, safe and inexpensive new avenue for diabetes treatment. However, these findings are preliminary. Additional studies are ongoing. At this time we do not recommend patients use this medication for their diabetes treatment until further studies are completed.”

For more details, please see our news release and:




Drs. Shoelson and Goldfine

Page last updated: June 26, 2019