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Rev Port Cardiol. 2017 Sep;36(9):655-668. doi: 10.1016/j.repc.2016.11.013. Epub 2017 Aug 23.

Sacubitril/valsartan: An important piece in the therapeutic puzzle of heart failure.

[Article in English, Portuguese]

Author information

Núcleo de Investigação Arterial, Medicina 4, Hospital de Santa Marta, Centro Hospitalar de Lisboa Central, EPE, Lisboa, Portugal. Electronic address:
Departamento de Cardiologia, Hospital de Santa Cruz, Centro Hospitalar de Lisboa Ocidental, EPE, Lisboa, Portugal.


Sacubitril/valsartan (LCZ696), a supramolecular sodium salt complex of the neprilysin inhibitor prodrug sacubitril and the angiotensin receptor blocker (ARB) valsartan, was recently approved in the EU and the USA for the treatment of chronic heart failure (HF) with reduced ejection fraction (HFrEF) (NYHA class II-IV). Inhibition of chronically activated neurohormonal pathways (the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system [RAAS] and sympathetic nervous system [SNS]) is central to the treatment of chronic HFrEF. Furthermore, enhancement of the natriuretic peptide (NP) system, with favorable cardiovascular (CV) and renal effects in HF, is a desirable therapeutic goal to complement RAAS and SNS blockade. Sacubitril/valsartan represents a novel pharmacological approach that acts by enhancing the NP system via inhibition of neprilysin (an enzyme that degrades NPs) and by suppressing the RAAS via AT1 receptor blockade, thereby producing more effective neurohormonal modulation than can be achieved with RAAS inhibition alone. In the large, randomized, double-blind PARADIGM-HF trial, replacement of an angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor (ACEI) (enalapril) with sacubitril/valsartan resulted in a significant improvement in morbidity and mortality in patients with HFrEF. Sacubitril/valsartan was superior to enalapril in reducing the risk of CV death or HF hospitalization (composite primary endpoint) and all-cause death, and in limiting progression of HF. Sacubitril/valsartan was generally well tolerated, with a comparable safety profile to enalapril; symptomatic hypotension was more common with sacubitril/valsartan, whereas renal dysfunction, hyperkalemia and cough were less common compared with enalapril. In summary, sacubitril/valsartan is a superior alternative to ACEIs/ARBs in the treatment of HFrEF, a recommendation that is reflected in many HF guidelines.


Angiotensin receptor‐neprilysin inhibitor; Antagonista do recetor da angiotensina‐inibidor da neprilisina; Heart failure; Inibição da neprilisina; Insuficiência cardíaca; Neprilysin inhibition; PARADIGM‐HF; Sacubitril/valsartan

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