High-dose liraglutide may be the next weight-loss breakthrough
- In a 56-week, phase III study, obese, non-diabetic patients with at least one risk factor for cardiovascular disease, who took liraglutide 3 mg in conjunction with diet and exercise lost an average of 8% of their body weight .
- Liraglutide 3 mg is investigational and not FDA-approved. However, liraglutide 1.2 and 1.8 mg is marketed as Victoza for treatment of type 2 diabetes.
- Overall, liraglutide decreased the risk of subjects with prediabetes from progressing to diabetes.
According to Novo Nordisk, which manufactures Victoza, liraglutide is not approved for weight management. However, this study, which included 3,731 obese adults without diabetes, but with CVD-related risk factors, showed a clear benefit, not only in terms of weight loss, but also in terms of delayed progression to diabetes.
Even though exercise and nutrition were part of the study protocol, only 32% of subjects with pre-diabetes had their blood levels return to normal, compared with 70% of liraglutide-treated patients. Assuming that this drug is approved for weight management, it could become a contender in the weight loss market.