Research Summary: New weekly insulin may help manage type 2 diabetes - Diabetes WA
 In Diabetes Research, Talking Type 2, Type 2

In a new study presented at ENDO 2021, the Endocrine Society’s annual meeting in March, researchers found that a new once-weekly basal insulin injection appeared to be as effective as once daily long-acting insulin injections for reducing blood glucose levels in people living with type 2 diabetes (T2D). 

The phase 2 clinical trial, carried out by researchers from the National Research Institute in Los Angeles, compared a new, yet to be approved once weekly insulin injection called basal insulin Fc (BIF) with insulin degludec, a long-acting daily insulin currently available in the US market. 

The once -weekly basal insulin injection trial group exhibited comparable long term blood glucose results (HbA1C) and a lower rate of low blood glucose episodes (hypoglycaemia) compared to those administering a once-daily insulin injection.   

Dr Juan Frias, the study’s principal investigator, commented that the research findings are really encouraging for future advancements in insulin therapy, specifically that: 

  • once weekly dosing may be less of a barrier than daily dosing for people living with type 2 diabetes to commence insulin therapy; 
  • and a fewer number of injections (weekly rather than daily) may make it easier to stay on track with the insulin therapy schedule, resulting in better long term health outcomes.  

While further research and clinical trials are necessary, both for type 1 and type 2 diabetes, the idea that once weekly insulin injections may in the future prove to be an effective and real alternative to daily injections for Australians living with diabetes is promising. This new weekly insulin is now also being tested in the for the management of type 1 diabetes. 

It is important to reiterate/note that no insulin currently in use and approved in Australia is suitable for weekly dosage, and we emphasise that adhering to health professional advice and instructions in of utmost importance. 

Read full published study here. 

Reference: Frias JP, Chien J, Zhang Q, et al. Once Weekly Basal Insulin Fc (BIF) is Safe and Efficacious in Patients with Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus (T2DM) Previously Treated With Basal Insulin. Presented at ENDO 2021, March 20-23, 2021. 

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