Saturday, June 10, 2023

Obesity drug poised to change treatment

As a growing number of overweight Americans clamor for Ozempic and Wegovy—drugs celebrities say cause weight loss—an even more powerful drug is about to alter the treatment landscape.

Tirzepatide, an Eli Lilly and Co. drug approved for the treatment of type 2 diabetes under the brand name Mounjaro, has helped overweight or obese people lose 16 percent of their weight, more than 15 kilos (34 lbs), in more than 17 months, the company said Thursday.

The late-stage study of the diet drug builds on previous evidence that non-diabetic participants lost up to 22 percent of their weight in that period with weekly injections of the drug. For a typical patient receiving the maximum dose, that meant losing more than 50 pounds (25 kilograms).

Diabetes makes weight loss significantly difficult, said Dr. Nadia Ahmad, Lilly’s medical director for the clinical treatment of obesity. This means that the recent results are particularly significant. “We haven’t seen this degree of weight reduction,” she said.

Based on the new findings, not yet fully disclosed, company officials said they will approach the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for expeditious approval for the sale of tyrzepatide for the management of chronic overweight. The decision would be known in the coming months. A company spokesman declined to confirm whether it would be marketed in the United States as a weight-loss drug under another brand name.

If approved for weight loss, tyrzepatide could be the most effective drug to date in a line of drugs transforming the treatment of obesity, which affects more than four in 10 U.S. adults and is linked to dozens of disabling diseases or mortals.

“If every obese person in this country lost 20 percent of their body weight, we’d stop prescribing them for reflux, diabetes, hypertension,” said Dr. Caroline Apovian, director of the Brigham and Women’s Center for Weight Management and Wellness. Hospital. “We would not prescribe stent modifications for these patients.”

Industry analysts predict that tripeptide could become one of the best-selling drugs in history, exceeding $50 billion annually. It should outpace Novo Nordisk’s Ozempik — an anti-diabetic drug so widely used for weight loss that comedian Jimmy Kimmel made a joke about it at the Oscars presentation — and Wegovy, a version also known as semaglutide approved in 2021. Both drugs have raked in nearly $10 billion in 2022 and more and more are being prescribed, according to company reports.

World Nation News Desk
World Nation News Desk
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