New type 2 diabetes drug to regulate blood sugar levels, aid weight loss. Check details here

New research examining the time needed to attain blood glucose targets shows that in comparison to other diabetic medications, tirzepatide reportedly shows a much quicker response when it comes to blood sugar control. What’s more? The medicine also reportedly aids in achieving weight loss goals faster as it mimics two natural insulin-releasing and appetite-suppressing hormones. 

As per the most recent analyses of the SURPASS-2 and SURPASS-3 trials, adults treated with different doses of injectable tirzepatide (5, 10, and 15 mg) reached blood glucose targets about four weeks sooner than those treated with injectable semaglutide (1 mg), and between four and 12 weeks sooner than those treated with once-daily insulin (degludec; iDe). Notably, these findings were presented at this year’s European Association for the Study of Diabetes (EASD) Annual Meeting in Stockholm.

Dr Adie Viljoen, a Consultant Metabolic Physician and Chemical Pathologist from the East and North Hertfordshire NHS Trust in the UK said, “Tirzepatide is unusual since it duplicates two natural insulin-releasing and appetite-suppressing hormones in one injection. The pace we are seeing in glucose-lowering and weight loss is beyond anything else we have right now, and it may put adults with type 2 diabetes in a better position to avoid long-term consequences.”

A word of caution:

It is worth noting that it is crucial to keep in mind that these medications should be used in addition to a healthy diet and regular exercise as T2D is a progressive, chronic illness in which the body does not produce or use insulin as it should, causing elevated blood glucose levels. 

Although there are numerous drugs available to treat diabetes, only around half of US individuals with T2D reach the target haemoglobin A1c (HbA1c; a measure of blood sugar management) of less than 7%. This is despite the fact that more than 30 million Americans have type 2 diabetes. Higher HbA1c levels are linked to problems such as heart disease, stroke, nephropathy, retinopathy, and nerve disease in the kidneys and eyes (neuropathy).

Tirzepatide is a single molecule that is a member of a novel class of diabetic medications that imitates two hormones, glucose-dependent insulinotropic polypeptide (GIP) and glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1), which are involved in blood sugar regulation and appetite reduction. In May 2022, the US Food and Drug Administration gave it the go-ahead for the treatment of T2D.

The SURPASS-2 and SURPASS-3 trials evaluated long-acting insulin (iDeg) as an add-on therapy to metformin with or without a sodium-glucose cotransporter-2 inhibitor, and different doses of tirzepatide (5, 10, and 15 mg) with a once-weekly injectable semaglutide 1 mg (a single hormone, GLP-1 mimic agent).

Tirzepatide’s impact on weight loss goals:

Accoridng to the report, an additional SURPASS-2 analysis revealed that patients treated with tirzepatide considerably outperformed semaglutide in terms of weight reduction goals. On the two higher doses of tirzepatide (10 and 15 mg), it took an average of 12 weeks to lose at least 5% of body weight, but semaglutide took 24 weeks (see table in notes to editors).

Viljoen asserts, “even a moderate weight loss of 5% of starting body weight is associated with clinically substantial improvements in weight-related health concerns.” It’s very amazing that persons with type 2 diabetes can make these health improvements in about half the time, as per the reporIt is important to note that the participants taking tirzepatide had mild to moderate gastrointestinal side effects including nausea, vomiting, and diarrhoea, while these side effects were most frequently reported during the dose escalation period and got better over time. 

(With inputs from ANI)

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