Scientists developed non-insulin drug candidate for diabetic patients

Apr 5, 2014 09:58 IST

Indian-origin scientist Arnab De of Columbia University developed the non-insulin drug candidate for diabetic patients in collaboration with Richard Di Marchi of Indiana University. It was published in the journal Peptide Science in first week of April 2014.

A non-insulin drug candidate for diabetic patients will help eliminate the risk of low-blood glucose shock in case of insulin overdose.

Usually, patients use insulin to keep their sugar levels in check. An overdose of insulin can lead to low blood-glucose (hypoglycemia) which may cause diabetic-coma and be life-threatening. Insulin treatment has also been reported to cause weight-gain which may intensify the diabetic condition.


Scientist found a peptide hormone in the gut called GLP1 that increases the secretion of insulin only when the blood glucose is high. GLP1 also will stimulate weight-loss and it offers the modernized treatment of Type II diabetes and reduces obesity.

GLP-1 has an extremely short half-life of two minutes and this instability will hamper its effectiveness in patients. To extend the duration of GLP-1 action the scientists visualized a pro-drug and in their research found several options to prolong the peptide action to once-a-day and once-a-week formulations.

The GPL-1 based pro-drug is needed to be taken only once a week. It is opposed to have after every meal. The pro-drug not only helps to defend against obesity and perhaps against Alzheimers disease also.  It represents a patient-friendly, diabetic therapeutic.

Indiana University Research and Technology Corporation (IURTC) have applied for patents internationally on these pro-drugs in the world-wide market.

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