Salsalate Study Now Recruiting

Last week, in his blog entry "Stress, Inflammation, Diabetes," David Spero wrote about the anti-inflammatory drug salsalate — an older, cheaper medicine that has been shown to lower blood glucose levels in preliminary studies. Several readers commented that they were interested in learning more about salsalate and possibly trying it. Now, thanks to a new clinical trial that is recruiting participants, they may have a chance.


This week, the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), a division of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), announced that researchers at 20 medical centers across the country are seeking adults with Type 2 diabetes and poorly controlled blood glucose to participate in a new study called Targeting Inflammation with Salsalate in Type 2 Diabetes (or TINSAL-T2D).

The main purpose of the study is to see whether salsalate will be effective at lowering people’s HbA1c levels (a measure of average blood glucose) over the course of about a year. Earlier NIDDK studies at the Joslin Diabetes Center in Boston showed that salsalate worked well at lowering blood glucose levels in people with Type 2 diabetes over a three-month period.

The study is looking for about 560 people, ages 18 to 75, whose blood glucose levels are not currently well controlled. Participants can already be taking up to two oral medicines, but not insulin. People who are chosen for the study will receive either salsalate or a placebo (inactive) pill for about a year; treatment will be free of charge.

In a press release about the trial, principal researcher Steve E. Shoelson, MD, PhD, said, “Given what we’re learning about the role of inflammation in the development of Type 2 diabetes, this therapy might be getting at an underlying cause of the disease. We hope that this drug will provide an additional tool for improving glucose control and thus reducing the risk of diabetes complications.”

To learn more about the study and find out how to get involved, visit and search for study NCT00799643 (or follow this direct link to the study page). You can also find out more at the study’s Web site,

Are you considering getting involved in this study? Let us know with a comment.

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  • jodiekellar

    Would this study also include people with pre-diabetes as a way of preventing getting type 2 diabetes?

  • Tara Dairman, Web Editor

    Hi jodiekellar,

    According to the study description at, this study is only open to people who already have Type 2 diabetes.

  • scooter


  • marcie


    Salstate is an NSAID — like aspirin, ibuprofen, COX inhibitors, etc.

    These meds can/do cause damage to the kidneys — something we with diabetes must be very careful about.

    Salsate has some very strong warnings with its prescribing information. Here’s the consumer friendly version of drug info put out by Medline Plus.

    I’m not trying to totally scare anyone off, but to let everyone know that this is something that you really, really ought to discuss with your primary care physician and/or endocrinologist.

  • rick dittbrenner

    I am presently pre Type II. My blood glucose in the morning is around 120 – 125. I have trouble losing and gaining weight. I watch my diet but could do much better. I do moderate excercise 5 times a week. I do have heightened potential for heart desease. I presently have mild high pertention and take two medications for the cardio. I do not take any meds for the diabetes issue, yet. Please consider me in your study.


  • Michael

    are there any results or finginds from this study?

    I am interested in anything I can do to help without more medicine to control Type 2

  • Michael

    sorry, should say “findings”