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New Data Shows That the Unique Levemir Weight Benefit ContinuesAfter Two Years of Treatment

At the same time Levemir provides significantly improved glycaemic control and reduced rates of hypoglycaemia

AMSTERDAM, Netherlands, Sept. 21, 2007-- – New data from two studies announced today by Novo Nordisk at the European Association for the Study of Diabetes (EASD) meeting confirms that Levemir® (insulin detemir [rDNA origin] injection) results in less weight gain than other basal insulins in type 1 and type 2 diabetes. The studies also demonstrate that Levemir® provides good glycaemic control in both types of diabetes and reduced rates of hypoglycaemia.1,2

In a two-year study in type 1 diabetes, patients treated with Levemir® gained significantly less weight than those on NPH insulin and at the same time had significantly improved glycaemic control compared with those on NPH insulin.1 This first long-term study with a modern basal insulin versus the older and commonly used NPH insulin demonstrates that the weight advantage of Levemir® is sustainable, while simultaneously providing significantly better glycaemic control and reduced nocturnal hypoglycaemia. 

The benefits of Levemir® are further confirmed in the large randomised clinical trial PREDICTIVE® 303, involving more than 5,000 patients. Type 2 diabetes patients who were switched from NPH insulin or insulin glargine to Levemir® over a period of 26 weeks actually lost weight, while still experiencing significant improvements in glycaemic control and reduced rates of hypoglycemia.2 

“The fact that Levemir® provides better glycaemic control, less nocturnal hypoglycaemia and less weight gain relative to NPH insulin over a period of two years is a clinical confirmation of the superior action profile of Levemir®,” commented Professor Luigi Meneghini, associate director at the Diabetes Research Institute, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, Miami, Florida.  

“Further to the weight benefit, the data presented at EASD highlights that Levemir® is associated with significantly less weight gain in both type 1 and 2 diabetes, and that this benefit is maintained over time. Levemir® may therefore be a more acceptable basal insulin option for patients with diabetes who are concerned about treatment-associated weight gain.”

The findings on weight gain reported at EASD are consistent with the unique weight benefit associated with Levemir® observed in 13 out of 13 published clinical studies, in which it has been compared to other basal insulins such as insulin glargine and NPH insulin.3–15 Together these studies provide data on over 4,000 patients with diabetes.

An increase in weight can have an adverse effect on an individual’s cardiovascular risk profile.16,17 If a patient delays initiating insulin treatment due to fear of weight gain, glucose levels can remain uncontrolled, putting the patient at increased risk of the complications associated with diabetes. Patients with diabetes who gain weight incur significantly greater total medical care costs.18 Weight gain can also affect a patient’s psychological well-being,19 quality of life20 and persistence with their diabetes treatment regimen.21 In contrast, even modest weight loss results in substantial health benefits such as improved insulin sensitivity, decreased blood pressure and reduced overall cardiovascular risk.22,23

  About Levemir®

Levemir® is a long-acting modern insulin (insulin analogue) that covers the body’s basal insulin need.24 Levemir® is released gradually and therefore it entails less fluctuation in blood glucose levels and better predictability compared to traditional long-acting NPH insulins.24 Levemir® in combination with OADs should be initiated with once-daily administration at a dose of 10 U or 0.1–0.2 U/kg and titrated based on individual patient needs.24 The dose should be taken in the evening, at dinner or before bedtime.3 Injections can easily be managed with the trusted and simple FlexPen® prefilled insulin pen.25,26,27

Novo Nordisk is a healthcare company and a world leader in diabetes care. The company has the broadest diabetes product portfolio in the industry, including the most advanced products within the area of insulin delivery systems. In addition, Novo Nordisk has a leading position within areas such as haemostasis management, growth hormone therapy and hormone replacement therapy. Novo Nordisk manufactures and markets pharmaceutical products and services that make a significant difference to patients, the medical profession and society. With headquarters in Denmark, Novo Nordisk employs approximately 25,350 employees in 79 countries, and markets its products in 179 countries. Novo Nordisk’s B shares are listed on the stock exchanges in Copenhagen and London. Its ADRs are listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol ‘NVO’.

Posted: September 2007