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Obese teen loses 15% of body weight in trial of repurposing diabetes drug


This drug may be a useful new tool for treating childhood obesity.

Beth Mole

enlarge/ Female scale in kilograms

A Repurposed Type 2 Diabetes Drug Helps Teens with Obesity Significantly reduced their weight in a 68-week clinical trial, researchers report this week in the New England Journal of Medicine. weight, reduced cardiovascular disease risk factors, and improved weight-related quality of life.
The drug is semaglutide (trade name Wegovy) It was approved to treat type 2 diabetes in 2017, but has since been shown to be useful for weight loss in obese or overweight adults. The drug works by mimicking a hormone called glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1), which targets an area of ​​the brain that regulates appetite and food intake, and has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for its use. Explained when it comes to weight loss in adults.
New data suggest it can also greatly help with obesity Teenagers who struggle with being overweight improve their health and outlook as they enter adulthood. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one in five children and teens in the U.S. is obese, which can lead to serious health conditions in children, including high blood pressure, high cholesterol, type 2 diabetes, breathing problems and joint problems Question.
Of course, semaglutide is not a treatment for obesity panacea for a complex, multifactorial chronic disease. During the 7-week follow-up after the 68-week treatment, some teens regained a small amount of weight, which suggests they may need to continue their medication to maintain weight loss, the researchers noted. It is unclear how long a person can take the drug and still see weight loss. Still, the drug could be a useful new tool in the fight against intractable, progressive disease.
results in phase 3, double – one reported this week In a blinded, randomized, placebo-controlled trial, researchers gave adolescents between the ages of 12 and 17 a weekly injection of 2.4 mg of semaglutide for 68 weeks. Among the 201 adolescents who participated in the trial, 133 obese adolescents and 1 overweight adolescent received semaglutide, while 67 adolescents received semaglutide. Give a placebo. Both groups, along with their parents and guardians, also received counseling on healthy nutrition and exercise.
The drug in general It appears to be safe, but there are some gastrointestinal side effects—nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea—that appear mostly in the early stages of treatment, and tend to lessen over time.

After 68 weeks, with semaglutide of patients lost, on average, about 15% of their initial weight—about 34 pounds. In the placebo group, the teens gained about 3 percent, or 5 pounds. The mean change in BMI (body mass index) was -16% in the treatment group and +0.6% in the placebo group.
In the treatment group, 73% of people lost at least 5% of their body weight, 62% lost at least 10%, and 37% lost at least 20%. Treated adolescents also found reductions in clinically important cardiovascular risk factors, including lower waist circumference, total cholesterol, and triglycerides, which were absent in the placebo group. Finally, adolescents who received treatment reported improved quality of life scores in terms of physical comfort.
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