OBJECTIVE: To determine the safety and efficacy of the long-acting insulin analog, insulin glargine, as a component of basal bolus therapy in patients with type 1 diabetes. RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS: Patients with type 1 diabetes receiving basal-bolus insulin treatment with NPH human insulin and insulin lispro were randomized to receive insulin glargine (HOE 901), a long-acting basal insulin analog, once a day (n = 310) or NPH human insulin (n = 309) as basal treatment with continued bolus insulin lispro for 16 weeks in an open-label study NPH insulin patients maintained their prior schedule of administration once or twice a day, whereas insulin glargine patients received basal insulin once a day at bedtime. RESULTS: Compared with all NPH insulin patients, insulin glargine patients had significant decreases in fasting blood glucose measured at home (means +/- SEM, -42.0 +/- 4.7 vs. -12.4 +/- 4.7 mg/dl [-2.33 +/- 0.26 vs. -0.69 +/- 0.26 mmol/l]; P = 0.0001). These differences were evident early and persisted throughout the study More patients in the insulin glargine group (29.6%) than in the NPH group (16.8%) reached a target fasting blood glucose of 119 mg/dl (< 6.6 mmol/l). However, there were no differences between the groups with respect to change in GHb. Insulin glargine treatment was also associated with a significant decrease in the variability of fasting blood glucose values (P = 0.0124). No differences in the occurrence of symptomatic hypoglycemia, including nocturnal hypoglycemia, were observed. Overall, adverse events were similar in the two treatment groups with the exception of injection site pain, which was more common in the insulin glargine group (6.1%) than in the NPH group (0.3%). Weight gain was 0.12 kg in insulin glargine patients and 0.54 kg in NPH insulin patients (P = 0.034). CONCLUSIONS: Basal insulin therapy with insulin glargine once a day appears to be as safe and at least as effective as using NPH insulin once or twice a day in maintaining glycemic control in patients with type 1 diabetes receiving basal-bolus insulin treatment with insulin lispro.