Novo’s oral semaglutide tops Jardiance and Victoza in two type 2 diabetes trials

pharmafile | June 10, 2019 | News story | Research and Development, Sales and Marketing Novo Nordisk, diabetes, pharma, semaglutide, type 2 diabetes 

Novo Nordisk has taken the opportunity at the American Diabetes Association (ADA) 79th Scientific Sessions to pull back the curtain on new type 2 diabetes data for oral semaglutide, showing that the glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) analogue achieved “statistically significant blood sugar reductions and statistically significant reduction of body weight” compared to rivals Jardiance and Victoza.

The study findings related to two trials: PIONEER 2 and PIONEER 4. In PIONEER 2, the drug reduced A1C levels by 1.3% after 26 weeks, topping the 0.9% reduction achieved with Jardiance. This benefit was maintained after 52 weeks, with the reduction given as “statistically significant”. In terms of the secondary endpoint of reduction in body weight, Novo’s therapy was found to be of similar effectiveness to Jardiance.

In PIONEER 4, oral semaglutide was found to be non-inferior to Victoza after 26 weeks in reducing A1C levels, and superior to placebo in patients whose type 2 diabetes is not adequately controlled with metformin, with or without a sodium-glucose co-transporter-2 (SGLT-2) inhibitor. Novo’s therapy also topped Victoza in the secondary endpoint of weight loss, scoring a 4.4kg change compared to 3.1kg change.

“Despite their proven safety and efficacy, GLP-1 receptor agonists are underutilised in clinical care,” remarked Dr Ildiko Lingvay, PIONEER 2 and 4 investigator and Professor at the Departments of Internal Medicine and Clinical Sciences at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center. “As a treating physician, I’m encouraged by these findings and the potential of investigational oral semaglutide to be the first oral GLP-1 receptor agonist available as a new treatment option for people living with type 2 diabetes.”

Matt Fellows

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