New once a day treatment for diabetics given approval

by Barbara Hewitt on January 29, 2013

New once a day treatment for diabetics given approval

A once a day new generation of insulin drug treatment has been given approval for use in Europe it has been announced. Danish pharmaceutical giant Novo Nordisk said that the European Commission has approved the marketing of its new products Tresiba and Ryzodeg.

Tresiba is a once a day drug that has a duration beyond 42 hours meaning that patients have the possibility of adjusting their time of injection when needed, while Ryzodeg contains Tresida in a soluble form to be taken once or twice a day with main meals. EC approval of both drugs for the treatment of adult diabetes patients comes after studies concluded that they outperformed similar medicines already on the market.

Mads Krogsgaard Thomsen, Novo’s chief scientific officer, said the approvals ‘constitute significant milestones’ for the firm and the treatment of diabetes. The company expects to launch Tresiba in the UK and Denmark during the first half of 2013, followed by other European markets throughout the rest of 2013 and next year. Ryzodeg is currently scheduled for an early 2014 launch.

Novo Nordisk is seeking regulatory approval for Tresiba and Ryzodeg in Canada, Switzerland and several other countries. Ryzodeg and Tresiba are also approved in Japan and are awaiting approval from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Meanwhile, scientists have found that one of the most used diabetes drug works differently than previously thought, opening up the way for new drug therapies with fewer side effects.

Quote from DiabetesForum.com : “Is there a problem with my having low blood glucose? I don’t feel at my best. I got dizzy trying to exercise. Do I need to keep eating more and more carbs, beyond the recommended 45g, until I get my blood glucose into the correct range? I was sick all last week, which could interact, but I thought I was over that.”

The research carried out in mice at the Institute for Diabetes, Obesity and Metabolism at the University of Pennsylvania in the US found that metformin suppresses the liver hormone glucagon’s ability to generate an important signalling molecule, pointing to new drug targets. ‘Overall, metformin lowers blood glucose by decreasing liver production of glucose, but we didn’t really know how the drug accomplished that,’ said Professor Morris Birnbaum.

Previously researchers had suggested that metformin reduces glucose synthesis by activating the enzyme AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK). However, this understanding was challenged when genetic experiments in 2010 found that the livers of mice without AMPK still responded to metformin, indicating that blood glucose levels were being controlled outside of the AMPK pathway.

Their research in mice found that metformin suppresses the liver hormone glucagon’s ability to generate an important signaling molecule, pointing to new drug targets. The team found that metformin leads to the accumulation of AMP in mice, which inhibits an enzyme called adenylate cyclase, thereby reducing levels of cyclic AMP and protein kinase activity, eventually blocking glucagon-dependent glucose output from liver cells.

This new understanding of metformin’s action has helped Birnbaum and his colleagues surmise that adenylate cyclase could be a new drug target by mimicking the way in which it is inhibited by metformin. This strategy would bypass metformin’s affect on a cell’s mitochondria to make energy, and possibly avoid the adverse side effects experienced by many people who take metformin, perhaps even working for those patients resistant to metformin.


The opinions expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of the DiabetesForum.com Community and should not be interpreted as medical advice. Please see your doctor before making any changes to your diabetes management plan.

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

A. Diabetic February 20, 2013 at 4:45 pm

I find it really sad and disappointing that articles like this never clearly define if they are talking about type 1 or type 2. They are very different diseases.

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rhiamom August 16, 2013 at 9:09 am

Since they are talking about Metformin, they are talking about insulin resistance, which is a hallmark of type 2 diabetes but can also be found in some type 1 diabetics.

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charles litavic February 20, 2013 at 6:31 pm

How about they Work and Spend some Money on Type 1 research. most Type 2 Diabetes is still Curable.

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luv2cNewThings February 23, 2013 at 2:19 pm

@A. Diabetc & charles litavic, I agree with you both completely.

I'm also very disappointed in the fact this simply sounds like a longer – long acting type of medication. (i.e.: Lantus perhaps) Additionally, sounds a little contradictory since it is supposed to have 42 hours of duration, but the article also said it should be taken once or twice a day. (Or did I misunderstand that?) If I didn't make a mistake in understanding, wouldn't that mean someone taking one dose of let's say Lantus would use the above-named product every two days instead? Then of course, there would still be the need of short acting insulin (i.e.: Humalog) with every meal.

So…in long, one less shot every other day then?

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