Archive by category | Diabetes and metabolism

Mysteries about drug metabolism in the obese weigh on doctors

By Alisa Opar The surgery was a success, but a question loomed after the procedure: given that the patient was obese, what was the right antibiotic dose? “The thought was, well, she’s twice as big as a normal person, so we’ll give her twice the dose,” says Aaron Cook, a clinical pharmacy specialist at the University of Kentucky in Lexington. “For that drug, levofloxacin, there’s just no information to go on, no dosage recommendation for obese patients.” The patient fared well, but such conundrums are becoming increasingly common as obesity rates rise around the globe. Just a month ago, researchers  … Read more

FDA committee votes down first-of-a-kind diabetes drugs

FDA committee votes down first-of-a-kind diabetes drugs

The first of a highly anticipated class of diabetes drugs assessed by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) got the thumbs-down from the agency’s Endocrinologic and Metabolic Drugs Advisory Committee yesterday. The FDA panel rejected dapagliflozin, developed by Bristol-Myers Squibb and AstraZeneca, by a 9–6 margin.  Read more

Cancer concerns emerge about experimental diabetes drug ahead of FDA evaluation

Ahead of a US Food and Drug Administration advisory committee meeting next month to evaluate the experimental diabetes drug dapagliflozin, its developers, Bristol-Myers Squibb and AstraZeneca, released positive two-year trial data over the weekend showing that the medication lowered blood sugar levels more than other diabetes drugs. But people on dapagliflozin also had higher rates of certain cancers and infections, which could factor into regulatory decisions at the 19 July panel meeting.  Read more

Nuclear leak reinforces need for drugs to combat radiation

Nuclear leak reinforces need for drugs to combat radiation

In the aftermath of Japan’s 9.0-magnitude earthquake and subsequent tsunami, evacuation centers surrounding the crippled Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station stockpiled nearly a quarter-million doses of potassium iodide as a preventative measure against radiation poisoning. These pills protect people from the long-term risks of thyroid cancer associated with chronic radiation exposure, but they do little to guard against the ill effects of high-dose radiation toxicity.  Read more

Review of data supports virus link to diabetes

Review of data supports virus link to diabetes

People with type I diabetes might be ten times more likely to have enteroviral infections than healthy people, according to a new study published yesterday. The analysis, led by Maria Craig of the University of Sydney, reviewed data from 26 studies involving more than 4,400 people with type 1 diabetes that measured enterovirus levels in the blood, gut or pancreas.  Read more

Weighty setbacks for obesity drugs

Americans battling obesity and hoping for a pill to help them lose weight will have to keep waiting: A US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) panel yesterday voted against approving Arena Pharmaceuticals’ experimental weight-loss pill lorcaserin.  Read more

In a busy week for the FDA, expert panel set to consider diet drug

The focus in the media this week may be on the US Food and Drug Administration’s deliberations around what to do with the diabetes blockbuster Avandia. Yet the agency’s advisory committee on endocrinologic and metabolic drugs has another drug to consider as well.  Read more

Genetic linkage between risk for obesity and Alzheimer’s

Genetic linkage between risk for obesity and Alzheimer’s

Swedish scientists have found that a variation of the FTO gene linked to an increased risk of obesity may also be associated with an increased risk of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. Their study also found carrying both the risky FTO allele with another gene known to be associated with Alzheimer’s disease increases the risk of dementia by 50%. The findings were announced earlier today at the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference on Alzheimer’s Disease in Honolulu, Hawaii.  Read more