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Sanofi submits new diabetes drug

Sanofi submits new diabetes drug application to U.S. regulator

Published December 23, 2015


PARIS –  French drugmaker Sanofi said on Wednesday it had submitted an application to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for a single daily insulin injection to treat adults with type 2 diabetes.

Sanofi said it had requested a six-month review of its new drug application by the FDA, rather than the standard 10 months.

"A large unmet medical need still exists for people with type 2 diabetes, as more than half are not at their blood sugar goal despite using oral medications or insulin," Sanofi's diabetes head, Pierre Chancel, said in a statement.

The latest application involves a combination of insulin glargine with its lixisenatide drug, Sanofi said.

'Slimming Pill' To Fight Obesity, Heart Disease, Diabetes May Be Available Soon

By Staff Reporter

The world is close to having an effective and safe slimming pill that can combat not just obesity, but also other illnesses such as cancer, type 2 diabetes, heart disease and more.
A lot of people all over the world and a high percentage of these overweight people are suffering from obesity. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in the United States alone, 34.9 percent of the population or 78.6 million people are obese.
Obesity is a worldwide condition that should be taken care of immediately. Unfortunately, there is no safe and effective treatment available as of now. The measures for fighting against obesity are very limited to daily exercise and keeping a healthy diet.
The Daily Mail reported that a group of scientists discovered a promising formula to combat obesity. It is stated that they are now one step closer to perfecting the slimming pills they are currently researching after they have found out and understood Cnot7 and Tob, which are genes responsible for making people fat, better.
The research discovered that these fat genes have an impact to the activity of another gene. This another gene is known to be the Ucp1, which is responsible for controlling the Ucp1 protein (different from Ucp1 gene) production.
The Ucp1 protein is sent into the fat cells. It is essential in the process of converting fat into heat, which is helpful in shedding off some pounds.
It is known that obese people have a low concentration of Ucp1 in fat. As a result, their body store fat instead of burning and converting it to energy.
According to Mirror, the research conducted concluded that the mice with less fat genes - Cnot7 and Tob - have great fat burning function while the mice lacking the Ucp1 genes have higher chances of storing fat and getting fatter.
Dr. Takashi Akinori, the lead researcher, said that their team wants to look for the best measure to suppress the pathway that holds back the "fat-to-energy conversion process." He also stated that enhancing one's fat burning functionality can lead to the production of the very first safe and effective anti-obesity drug.
They want to produce a drug that helps people maintain a fit body without having the need to completely avoid and give up the food that they want to eat.
Do you think that the world is really close to having that perfect anti-obesity drug? Tell us your thoughts by commenting below.

Once-a-week diabetes meds are similar in safety and effectiveness

By Andrew M. Seaman

There's little difference in the performance of five new once-a-week drugs to treat diabetes when they're compared to one another, though small differences in side effects emerge, according to a new review of existing evidence.
Past studies of the drugs known as glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor agonists - or GLP-1RAs - have found that the medications improve blood sugar control and reduce body weight, but the review's lead author said no research had compared the various versions head-to-head.
"The main message is that today several drugs are available for the control of hyperglycemia in type 2 diabetes, as never before," said Dr. Francesco Zaccardi, of the Diabetes Research Center at Leicester General Hospital in the U.K., "Therefore, it is even more important to know differences and similarities among drugs."
In type 2 diabetes, the body can't properly use or make enough of the hormone insulin to convert blood sugar into energy.
The drugs compared in the study - three of which are on the market, and two in development - stimulate insulin and have other beneficial effects like slowing digestion, the study team writes in Annals of Internal Medicine. All are taken once a week.
The American Diabetes Association and the European Association for the Study of Diabetes currently recommend GLP-1RAs as an option for people with type 2 diabetes who have tried other treatments like lifestyle changes and metformin, which is a longstanding oral drug used to improve blood sugar control.
For the new study, Zaccardi and colleagues analyzed data from 34 trials that included a total of 21,126 participants taking one of the five GLP-1RAs.
They found that the drugs performed similarly in reducing blood sugar, as well as heart disease risk factors like high blood pressure, cholesterol and inflammation. The risk of dangerous blood sugar lows known as hypoglycemia was also similar among people taking all five drugs.
The medications differed, however, when it came to reducing weight and HbA1c, which is a measure of average blood sugar levels over about three months.
Dulaglutide 1.5 milligrams (mg), which is sold as Trulicity by Eli Lilly; once-weekly exenatide, which is sold as Bydureon by AstraZeneca; and taspoglutide 20 mg, which is in development by Ipsen and Roche, all performed better on those those two points than albiglutide, which is sold as Tanzeum by GlaxoSmithKline. Semaglutide, in development by Novo Nordisk, was not included in this analysis.
Still, the differences were small. HbA1c is measured in percentages with normal being below 6 percent and 6.5 percent or above being considered diabetes. Zaccardi told Reuters Health in an email that the greatest differences between the drugs were around 0.4 percent for HbA1c and about three pounds of body weight.
"The weight loss is instructive because a lot of people hear stories of people losing a lot of weight, but the mean weight loss is modest," said Dr. Sethu Reddy, chief of the Adult Diabetes Section at the Joslin Diabetes Center in Boston.
The researchers also found that taspoglutide 20 mg has the highest risk of nausea. And once-weekly exenatide increased heart rate compared with albiglutide and dulaglutide by 1.4 to 3.2 beats per minute.
Zaccardi said that few comparisons like this study have been done between similar diabetes drugs, which limits their ability to compare the results to other types of treatments.
"I believe that the study underlines the necessity to perform direct comparisons among drugs of the same class to better clarify the pros and cons of each drug," he added.
Reddy, who was not involved in the new review, also cautioned that the findings are based on a comparison of existing data from separate studies.
"It's not the 'real deal' so to speak in that there are no trials comparing these drugs to one another," he said.
But, Reddy added, the review and new research into GLP-1RAs should give people comfort since it shows the drugs really do work to reduce high blood sugar and other diabetes symptoms.

"That makes me more comfortable that this therapeutic area is real, and not a flash in the pan and the mechanism is real," he said.

Stress increases stroke risk in diabetics

Obesity and sedentary lifestyle can increase risk of kidney stone and tooth decay can be controlled through proper diet and toothbrushing—studies and research tips for a healthier you
Carbohydrate diet more effective than animal protein diet to combat post-pregnancy diabetes risk
Taking more animal protein and less carbohydrate during pregnancy can increase the risk of diabetes, a study suggests. The researchers examined the responses of 4,500 women with a history of gestational diabetes who filled out dietary surveys between 1991 and 2001. They were divided into five groups based on the amount of carbohydrates and protein in their diet. The findings revealed the risk was smaller in women who took plant-based protein and fats in their diet and higher in women whose diet was high in animal proteins and low in carbohydrates. Animal protein increases concentration of branched-chain amino acids in the blood which slows blood’s ability to process insulin, which can lead to diabetes. The study was published inDiabetes Care. Read more here.
Depression and stress increases stroke risk in diabetics by 53%
Depression and stress in diabetes patients can increase risk of stroke and death from cardiovascular disease by 53%, warns an American study. Researchers from East Carolina University reviewed data on nearly 22,000 adults where 4,100 had diabetes. The average age of the participants was 64 years and 58% were females. The study revealed people with diabetes were more likely to die of cardiovascular disease if they suffered from stress or depression in comparison to diabetics without these mental health problems. Having both stress and depression at the same time increases the risk further, noted the study. The study was published in Diabetes Care. Read more here.
Obesity and lack of exercise can cause kidney stones
Obesity, high blood pressure and lack of exercise can lead to growth of kidney stones, claims a new study. Kidney stones occur when crystal deposits become stone-like lumps. The researchers reviewed data on 2,19,255 patients and found that people with METS are more likely to develop kidney stones. METS is a metabolic syndrome caused by a combination of obesity, diabetes, high cholesterol and high blood pressure. “Poor eating habits which involve excessive animal protein, salt and sugar intake fuel the build-up of chemicals in the urine which exacerbates stone formation,” said Dr Bhaskar Somani from Southampton General Hospital. The researchers noted that adults can reduce the risk by drinking between two and three litres of water every day. The study was published in the Journal of Endourology. Read more here.
Tooth decay can be treated without drilling

Tooth decay can be stopped without the need of the traditional drill-and-fill practice that is commonly used, claims a study. Previous studies have showed that tooth decay is a slower process than believed. The researchers enlisted 1,000 people for the study and treated half of them with the conventional drill-and-fill method. The other half was treated using a Caries Management System, a preventive approach that focuses on home tooth brushing skills and restricts snacking and intake of sugary drinks between meals. After seven years, they found that the need for fillings was reduced by 30-50% in the preventive group. The study was published in Community Dentistry and Oral Epidemiology.  Compiled by Abhijit Ahaskar

Diabetes Patients Have Double The Tooth Loss Than Everyone Else, And African Americans Are At Highest Risk

By Steve Smith@realsteve_smith

Tooth loss is another symptom of diabetes, especially in African Americans.Partha S. Sahana CC BY 2.0
The American Diabetes Association reports diabetes now affects more than nine million Americans, costing $245 billion to diagnose and treat the disease. While there are remedies to help fight or alleviate common symptoms, like high-intensity interval training and cooking a well-balanced meal to maintain a healthy diet and exercise, plenty of Americans still frequently experience high blood pressure, kidney disease, and increased risk for stroke. According to a new study, diabetics may also be losing more of their teeth.
The study, published in Preventing Chronic Disease, examined tooth-loss trends from more than 37,000 people using data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey conducted between 1971 and 2012. Researchers found tooth loss was prevalent in type 2 diabetics, and even more so among African Americans despite an overall decline in the past 40 years. They also reported aging African Americans with diabetes are much more susceptible to losing their teeth than whites or Mexican Americans, while other populations with diabetes experience tooth loss about twice as much as non-diabetics.
"We have more evidence that oral health is related to diabetes," said lead researcher Bei Wu, a professor of nursing and global health at Duke University in Durham, N.C., according to HealthDay. However, Wu and her team were unable to determine why, exactly, there’s a link between diabetes and tooth loss.
Between 1999 and 2000, Wu said people with diabetes were 34 percent less likely to have at least 21 teeth than those who did not have diabetes. Yet Dr. Edmond Hewlett, a spokesperson for the American Dental Association, told CBS News these concerns with oral and overall health are important for the general public to be aware of, not just those with diabetes.
“[The connection between tooth loss and diabetes] is something we've been aware of, but this gives additional strong evidence about that,” Hewlett, who is also a professor at the UCLA School of Dentistry, said. “And the other big thing is health disparities — the rate at which some diseases can affect some racial or ethnic groups more than others."
The ADA reports diabetes “may weaken your mouth’s germ-fighting powers,” making diabetics more susceptible to gingivitis and serious gum disease (periodontitis). The disease causes blood vessels to expand, which slows the flow of nutrients to the mouth and the removal of harmful bacteria. However, the ADA adds this is a two-way street: Gum disease “may also have the potential to affect blood glucose control and contribute to the progression of diabetes.”
“Then let's layer on the access to care issue that some patients face,” Hewlett said. “There's other good evidence showing African Americans have lower access to dental care."
The researchers are using their findings to emphasize how important oral health and hygiene is to those with diabetes. They recommend regular visits to the dentist and proper home care for both teeth and gums, which includes brushing and flossing.

Researchers concluded: “ Given the bidirectional relationship between diabetes and periodontal disease, our study findings highlight the need to improve dental self-care and knowledge of diabetes risks among people with diabetes, especially among non-Hispanic blacks, who had more tooth loss and lost teeth at a higher rate.”

Source: Wu B et al. Forty-Year Trends in Tooth Loss Among American Adults With and Without Diabetes Mellitus: An Age-Period-Cohort Analysis. Preventing Chronic Disease. 2015.

Hate needles? Google's smartwatch will analyse your blood prick-free

Google has filed a patent application for its new smartwatch that is able to draw blood from the user's wrist for testing and analysis without the dreaded prick. The blood is drawn through a painless procedure involving micro-particles and does not require needles.
Google has been involved in several projects that are aimed at fighting diabetes and other severe ailments. Since blood testing and analysis is a regular process, Google's new smartwatch aims to remove the pain factor by replacing needles with a new technology.
Google to launch health information app in UK soon
The new blood-sucking technology involves a micro-particle being shot into the wearer's skin through a high pressure gas barrel and a tiny amount of blood sucked back into a low pressure barrel. The blood thus drawn can be used for several tests, analysis and diagnostics.
If you are a diabetes patient, this new technology will let you go through regular blood testing without having to go for injections, thus saving you from pain and letting you walk the extra mile to get yourself treated quicker and more effectively.
Apple ResearchKit lends a helping hand to medics
Google has also built a new smart contact lens which can analyse sugar levels from data collected from tear fluid in the wearer's eye. The smart lens contains micro sensors and computer processing chip sets for this purpose.
Google's erstwhile research and development unit for health science projects is now under the aegis of its parent-unit Alphabet. Life Science, a health care start-up under Alphabet, is partnering with Novartis to perfect the smart contact lens for commercial use.
Google to enter health and fitness market with Google Fit
“Our dream is to use the latest technology in the miniaturisation of electronics to help improve the quality of life for millions of people. We are very excited to work with Novartis to make this dream come true," said Google's co-founder Serget Brin whehn the deal was struck.
The lens could also be used to help improve poor eyesight and even work to counteract the effects of cataracts.

Diabetes drug metformin tested for anti-aging properties in human trials

Ian Wyant

Anti-aging is a phrase largely associated with a glut of creams, diets, and therapies touted by pop-up ads. The many spurious claims of technologies that put a stop to old age have made the process of testing out the first potentially real anti-aging drug an uphill battle. Fortunately, the push to test the diabetes drugmetformin as a cure for aging in humans has been met with success, and the FDA has approved a human trial.
According to an article by The Telegraph, metformin, though usually used to treat type 2 diabetes, has been shown to slow down the aging process and extend the lives of animals in clinical tests. Scientists expect that if the drug works as well on humans as it does on mice, than normal life expectancy for humans could rise from around 80 years to nearly 120 years.Newsmax reported on Dec. 3 that mice treated with metformin had a 40 percent longer lifespan and roundworms given the drug aged much slower.
If the drug works as expected the results could be revolutionary as medicine would no longer focus so much on treating the results of aging, like cancer, diabetes and dementia, but fighting the aging process itself. Called ‘geroscience’ this new treatment plan could render diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s a thing of the past.
“If you target an ageing process and you slow down ageing then you slow down all the diseases and pathology of ageing as well,” Gordon Lithgow, one of the study’s advisors and professor at the Buck Institute for Research on Ageing in California, told The Telegraph. “That’s revolutionary. That’s never happened before.”
For a long time, ageing has been seen as an inevitable part of life. However, since every cell contains a DNA blueprint of the body humans could potentially grow older without actually ageing at all. Most of the issues associated with old age arise from the billions of cell divisions that occur over our lifetime. With each cell division, the chances of their being a mistake grow larger. And the mistakes that do occur lead to issues where cells can no longer get rid of mutations, causing cancer, or the brain ceases to clear out plaques, leading to dementia.
Scientists believe that metformin, which increases the number of oxygen molecules released into a cell, increases the durability of cells and their longevity. The usefulness of metformin for humans is helped by the fact that it is already used to treat patients with diabetes. In fact, last year Cardiff University discovered that diabetes patients given metformin lived longer than those without diabetes, despite statistics saying they should have died eight years prior.
The upcoming clinical trial for the drug is being called TAME, Targeting Aging with Metformin, and the test will be performed on 3,000 subjects between the ages of 70 and 80 who are at risk for or already have cancer, dementia or heart disease. Scientists are hoping that the trial, which will begin in the winter of next year, will show that metformin can slow aging and stop disease.
If the results are positive that means a true anti-aging drug may not be far off. Current estimates suggest that a vaccine or pill that fights old age could increase lifespan by nearly 50 percent. According to Professor Lithgow, young people in the future may be given a treatment early on that will dramatically extend their lifespan. He suspects that expanding human health range may have a significantly greater effect on extending human life than finding a cure for cancer, dementia or any of the other diseases that occur with aging.