New Diabetes Drug Liraglutide Works
Like Byetta, Liraglutide Cuts Blood Sugar, Weight in Type 2 Diabetes
Patients treated with liraglutide lost weight, while most of those treated with Amaryl gained weight. Weight loss over the first 16 weeks of the study was maintained at the one-year mark.
Patients who had nausea for more than seven days lost 7.1 pounds on the 1.2 mg dose of liraglutide, 7.5 pounds on the 1.8 mg dose of liraglutide, and 3.15 pounds on Amaryl.
Patients who had no nausea, or nausea for up to seven days, lost 4.1 pounds on the 1.2 mg dose of liraglutide, lost five pounds on the 1.8 mg dose of liraglutide, and gained 2.7 pounds on Amaryl.
Liraglutide also reduced patients' blood pressure more than Amaryl did.
While nausea was a common side effect of liraglutide, only six liraglutide patients dropped out of the study because of vomiting.
"We conclude that liraglutide is safe and effective as initial pharmacological therapy for type 2 diabetes mellitus and has advantages over other drugs used in monotherapy, such as greater reductions in weight, the number of [too-high-blood-sugar] events, and systolic blood pressure," Garber and colleagues conclude.
The findings appear in the Sept. 25 online edition of The Lancet. The study was funded by liraglutide maker Novo Nordisk. Garber has received research grants from the company (as have several other study authors) and serves as an advisory board member. Two of the study authors are Novo Nordisk employees. The researchers had full access to the study data and claim final responsibility for the decision to submit the findings for publication.