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Novo Nordisk Weight Loss Pill Amycretin: Patients Lose 13.1% of Body Weight after 12 Week Trial

Published March 12, 2024 1:24 PM
James Morales
Published March 12, 2024 1:24 PM

Key Takeaways

  • Novo Nordisk is the company behind the popular weight loss drug Wegovy.
  • Following the success of Wegovy, Novo Nordisk is now trialing other potential obesity medications.
  • The latest drug on trial, amycretin, has been shown to reduce patients’ overall body weight by 13%.

Off the back of demand for its anti-obesity injection Wegovy, Novo Nordisk has witnessed its market valuation triple since 2021. Looking to replicate a winning formula, the Danish pharmaceutical company is now exploring other potential obesity treatments

Building on the success of Wegovy, Novo Nordisk has completed a 12-week clinical trial for a new experimental weight loss drug, amycretin, which was shown to reduce patients’ overall body weight by 13.1% on average.

Novo Nordisk Doubles Down on Weight Loss Medication

Having traditionally been known for insulin and other diabetes treatments, Novo Nordisk initially developed semaglutide (the generic name for Wegovy) for patients with type 2 diabetes.

Marketed as Ozempic, the diabetes drug proved an immediate hit, in large part thanks to its side effect of appetite suppression.

Before long, doctors had started prescribing Ozempic off-label to overweight patients without diabetes, and in 2023, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Wegovy as an injectable version of the drug for treating obesity.

With as many as 1 in 4  Americans classified as overweight, the market Novo Nordisk is targeting is huge. 

Alongside amycretin, the firm is also trialing a combination of semaglutide and another obesity drug cagrilintide, which has been found to achieve greater  weight loss compared to either medication alone.

Amycretin vs. Wegovy

During a presentation at Novo Nordisk’s Capital Markets Day, head of development Martin Lange Holst reported results from the 12-week amycretin trial.

He said the new drug’s efficacy was nearly twice the level observed with Wegovy at the same point in development. Having demonstrated its potential, he said a larger phase 2 amycretin trial is now planned for the second half of 2024.

Alongside enhanced weight loss, the proposed treatment offers another major advantage over Novo Nordisk’s current offering. Unlike Wegovy, which patients administer via weekly injections, amycretin is delivered orally.

When Will New Wight Loss Pills Hit the Market?

Commenting on the timeline for amycretin development, Holst Lange said  he expected the new drug to hit the market “at the very least within this decade.”

But Novo Nordisk has other obesity medicines in the pipeline that could be approved even sooner.

The company currently has 3 obesity drugs  undergoing phase 3 trials, including the combined cagrilintide and semaglutide medicine CagriSema, and new, long-acting formulations of semaglutide.

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