How STRENGTH Results Impact REDUCE-IT, with Deepak Bhatt, MD, MPH

As part of our coverage of ACC.21, Practical Cardiology reached out to Deepak Bhatt, MD, MPH, to learn about his reaction to the latest analysis of the STRENGTH trial and how it might impact how REDUCE-IT results are interpreted.

One of the most attention-grabbing sessions at the American College of Cardiology’s 70th Annual Scientific Sessions (ACC.21) was a late-breaking session on the second day of the conference.

Featuring an analysis of the STRENGTH trial that found no association between achieved EPA levels and cardiovascular benefit, the data alone was substantial enough to draw the attention of cardiologists and cardiology professionals. Now, add to the equation that Deepak Bhatt, MD, MPH, lead investigator of the REDUCE-IT trial and Executive Director of Interventional Cardiovascular Programs at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, was among the discussants on the panel, and the session provided one of the most comprehensive perspectives on EPA and DHA possible.

The STRENGTH analysis assessed the cardiovascular benefit of AstraZeneca’s omega-3 carboxylic acid (Epanova), which is a combination of EPA and DHA, and, after its presentation at AHA 2020, results were immediately compared by many to the results of REDUCE-IT. Presented by Steve Nissen, MD, Chief Academic Officer of the Heart, Vascular, and Thoracic Institute at the Cleveland Clinic, the latest analysis adds even more to the conversation, suggests achieved levels of EPA and DHA had no impact on cardiovascular events seen within the trial. The analysis also revealed use of the agent was associated with an increased risk of new onset atrial fibrillation, which Nissen noted is not the first study examining a fish oil-based therapy to reach this conclusion.

For more on the results of the ACC.21 STRENGTH analysis, check out our coverage of the study.

For his reaction and perspective on the newest data from the STRENGTH trial and how they might help inform our understanding of the results of REDUCE-IT, Practical Cardiology reached out to Bhatt and that conversation is the subject of this ACC.21 House Call.