A new study has discovered that subcutaneous semaglutide taken once a week is nearly 2x as effective as current weight loss drugs on the market.
This provides an opportunity for a new potential treatment for type 2 diabetes and other obesity-related conditions, according to the study.
Semaglutide works by suppressing appetite centres in the brain to reduce hunger and calorie intake.
The study investigated the effectiveness and safety of taking a weekly injection of semaglutide.
The study included almost 2000 overweight or obese adult, lasted 68 weeks from fall 2019 to spring 2020 and was carried out in 16 countries.
Overall, 94.3% of the participants completed the trial.
Participants started from an average baseline weight of 16.4 stone pounds and a BMI of 38.
According to the press release, individuals saw an average weight loss of 2.4 stone (34 pounds) compared with 5 pounds for the placebo group.
About one-third lost 20% or more of their weight
Furthermore, one-third of the participants treated with semaglutide lost at least 20% (46 lbs.) of their baseline weight, which is a common reduction for many patients who have had gastric bypass in the one to three years following their procedure.
One of the researchers, Dr. Kushner stated:
“It’s the very first time we have a medication that even begins to approach the weight loss people to achieve with bariatric surgery. Bariatric surgery is still more effective than this medication but surgery carries additional risks.”
The conclusion the researchers came to is that semaglutide is approximately 1.5 to 2 times more effective that current weight loss medication on the market.
After the study, the participants reported improved physical function, like walking faster and climbing stairs with less pain.
In addition too this, they achieved greater improvements in their blood pressure, blood lipids and blood glucose control.
Side effects from the drug included mild-to-moderate nausea and diarrhoea and generally resolved without discontinuing the study.
You can find out more about the study here: https://news.northwestern.edu/stories/2021/02/anti-obesity-medication/
The BBC has also reported on this study and you can read it here: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-56011979