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Lilly and Boehringer diabetes drug sees US launch

Published on 24/03/15 at 10:44am
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Lilly and Boehringer Ingelheim’s combo diabetes drug Glyxambi is now available to treat adult patients in the US.

Glyxambi (empagliflozin/linagliptin) combines Boehringer’s Jardiance (empagliflozin) with Lilly’s Tradjenta (linagliptin) inhibitors to improve – along with diet and exercise – blood sugar control in adults with type 2 diabetes.

The tablet was approved by the FDA in January and is now available by prescription in many leading chain and independent pharmacies across the US.

“As the fourth diabetes medicine to emerge from our alliance pipeline in the US, we believe Glyxambi may help adults with type 2 diabetes lower their blood sugar and manage their diabetes,” says Kathleen Dowd, who is the senior vice president of marketing at Boehringer.

Glyxambi is the first and only dual inhibitor combination therapy approved in the US to combine a sodium glucose co-transporter-2 (SGLT2) inhibitor with a dipeptidyl peptidase-4 (DPP-4) inhibitor in a once-daily tablet.

Dowd adds: “The rapid market availability of Glyxambi following its recent FDA approval in late January is a reflection of Boehringer and Lilly's commitment to bringing new treatment options to people with type 2 diabetes.”

The union between Lilly and Boehringer started in 2011 through a multi-million dollar collaboration that saw them develop a mid-to-late-stage pipeline of four diabetes compounds. Last year’s copycat version of Sanofi’s best-selling insulin Lantus (glargine injection) became the alliance’s latest diabetes product approved in the EU.

The FDA’s green light for Glyxambi was based on a Phase III clinical trial that evaluated the efficacy and safety of the tablet. “As an add-on to metformin, Glyxambi was superior in reducing A1C when compared with either empagliflozin or linagliptin alone,” explains David Kendall, who is the vice president of medical affairs at Lilly’s diabetes division.

“The management of type 2 diabetes requires a personalized treatment plan, and Glyxambi provides patients and their physicians with a new option to help improve blood sugar control.”

According the World Health Organization an estimated 347 million people worldwide have diabetes, including 29 million in the US alone.

Tom Robinson

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