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CMAJ. 2012 Apr 17;184(7):E367-72. doi: 10.1503/cmaj.111017. Epub 2012 Mar 19.

The effect of rosuvastatin on incident pneumonia: results from the JUPITER trial.

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  • 1Clinical Research Center, Soroka University Medical Center, Beer-Sheva, Israel.



Evidence from observational studies have raised the possibility that statin treatment reduces the incidence of certain bacterial infections, particularly pneumonia. We analyzed data from a randomized controlled trial of rosuvastatin to examine this hypothesis.


We analyzed data from the randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled JUPITER trial (Justification for the Use of Statins in Prevention: an Intervention Trial Evaluating Rosuvastatin). In this trial, 17,802 healthy participants (men 50 years and older and women 60 and older) with a low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol level below 130 mg/dL (3.4 mmol/L) and a high-sensitivity C-reactive protein level of 2.0 mg/L or greater were randomly assigned to receive either rosuvastatin or placebo. We evaluated the incidence of pneumonia on an intention-to-treat basis by reviewing reports of adverse events from the study investigators, who were unaware of the treatment assignments.


Among 17,802 trial participants followed for a median of 1.9 years, incident pneumonia was reported as an adverse event in 214 participants in the rosuvastatin group and 257 in the placebo group (hazard ratio [HR] 0.83, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.69-1.00). In analyses restricted to events occurring before a cardiovascular event, pneumonia occurred in 203 participants given rosuvastatin and 250 given placebo (HR 0.81, 95% CI 0.67-0.97). Inclusion of recurrent pneumonia events did not modify this effect (HR 0.81, 95% CI 0.67-0.98), nor did adjustment for age, sex, smoking, metabolic syndrome, lipid levels and C-reactive protein level.


Data from this randomized controlled trial support the hypothesis that statin treatment may modestly reduce the incidence of pneumonia. ( trial register no. NCT0023968.).

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