Insulin injections once-a-week on the horizon for people with type 2 diabetes 27 July 2021 For millions of people living with type 2 diabetes the burden of daily injections is a challenge, but new results from clinical trials suggest a once-a-week shot may be as safe and effective. The game-changing study published in Diabetes Care, investigated the drug icodec, an insulin with a half-life of 196 hours over eight days. The drug works by modifying the insulin molecule to keep it from being broken down by enzymes and maintains a steady insulin release by binding to proteins produced in the liver. The research from UT Southwestern suggests the once-weekly treatment could break barriers for people who struggle with the fear and inconvenience of daily injections. “This treatment will also decrease the burden on those who care for patients with diabetes requiring insulin. For example, for patients who need help injecting, those living in long-term care facilities and those with memory problems, a once-weekly insulin will facilitate treatment and decrease the burden on care providers.” Maintaining regular insulin treatment is an ongoing challenge for millions of people with type 2 diabetes around the world. In the phase 2 clinical trials, 205 patients from seven countries including the US and Europe participated to test the efficacy and safety of the drug over 23 weeks. The participants were divided into four groups – a control group that continued receiving daily injections of insulin and three experimental groups that received weekly icodec shots. These three groups were used to calculate the dose required to stabilise a patient’s blood glucose level. In all three groups, the new drug worked well with no episodes of severe hypoglycemia recorded. The study found that starting with a higher dose at first helped patients reach their optimal glucose target quicker. A large phase 3 clinical trial is already underway, which will evaluate the efficacy of weekly icodec doses in patients with either type 1 or 2 diabetes. For more information on the types of insulin and how it is administered you can go to here.