Weekly semaglutide injection related to vital weight reduction in weight problems

February 11, 2021

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Novo Nordisk supported this study. Kushner reports that he is a consultant for Novo Nordisk. In the study you will find all relevant financial information from all other authors.


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Obese adults who were assigned the GLP-1 receptor agonist semaglutide saw significant weight loss compared to placebo, with more than half of the participants losing 15% of their body weight, according to the STEP 1 study.

Robert Kushner

“Semaglutid [Ozempic, Novo Nordisk] is the most effective drug used to treat obesity. 32% of participants lose at least 20% of their original weight. ” Robert Kushner, MD, Professor of medicine and medical education at the Feinberg School of Medicine at Northwestern University in Chicago, Healio said. “It could be a game changer for those struggling with obesity, which affects over 40% of American adults.”

Overweight or obese adults who received semaglutide weekly had a mean weight loss of 14.9% after 68 weeks.

For the semaglutide treatment effect in people with obesity (STEP) 1, Kushner and colleagues analyzed data from 1,961 adults without diabetes with a BMI of at least 30 kg / m² or at least 27 kg / m² with a weight-related comorbid condition. Researchers randomly assigned participants to a 2: 1 ratio of 2.4 mg subcutaneous semaglutide or placebo once a week for 68 weeks. Both groups received lifestyle intervention. Co-primary endpoints were percent change in body weight and weight reduction of at least 5%. Researchers used the primary estimate to assess the effects regardless of treatment discontinuation or rescue efforts.

Significant weight loss observed

The researchers found that the mean change in body weight from baseline to week 68 was -14.9% for the semaglutide group and -2.4% for the placebo group, with an estimated treatment difference of -12.4 percentage points (95%) CI, -13.4 to -11.5)). Participants assigned semaglutide lost a mean of -15.3 kg versus -2.6 kg in the placebo group, an estimated treatment difference of -12.7 kg (95% CI, -13.7 to -11.7 ) corresponds.

Consistent with the class of GLP-1 receptor agonists, nausea and diarrhea were the most common adverse events reported with semaglutide. These were typically temporary and mild to moderate in severity, according to researchers. Within the cohort, 4.5% of participants in the semaglutide group and 0.8% of participants in the placebo group discontinued treatment due to gastrointestinal events.

At week 68, participants in the semaglutide group had a weight loss of at least 5% versus placebo (86.4% versus 31.5%) significantly greater, as was weight loss of 10% or more (69.1% versus 12%). ) and weight loss of 15% or more (50.5% versus 4.9%; P <0.001 for all comparisons).

“We know that many of the health concerns we see in people struggling with their weight, such as type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, GERD, and arthritis of the stressful joints, are improved by losing at least 10% of their body weight become. Said Kushner. “In this study, nearly 70% of participants achieved that 10% weight loss threshold by taking semaglutide.”

Kushner said future work must include a more diverse patient population, including more men and people with underrepresented backgrounds.

“Other research questions include the drug’s long-term use, its effective use in primary care, and its benefits in reducing cardiovascular disease,” said Kushner. “The SELECT study is already underway.”

‘A long way to go’

In the commentary on the study Julie R. Ingelfinger, MD, Professor of Pediatrics at Harvard Medical School and Senior Advisor in Pediatric Nephrology at Massachusetts General Hospital for Children Clifford J. Rosen, MD, The director of the Center for Clinical and Translational Research at the Research Institute at Maine Medical Center in Scarborough called the data encouraging and “a good start,” but noted that the study excluded several populations, including men, blacks and other non-white adults, the questions raised questions about effectiveness of semaglutide among these groups. In addition, more than 40% of the cohort had prediabetes; Questions remain about the drug’s effectiveness in adults with obesity and normal glucose tolerance. The authors also wrote that subcutaneous administration may not be “palatable or inexpensive” in the long run.

“Given the effectiveness of bariatric surgery in terms of weight loss and glucose tolerance, studies are needed that compare these two different forms of therapy (surgery and pharmacological therapy),” the researchers write. “Overall, we still have a long way to go to control the obesity epidemic, but STEP 1 is well-named.”

For more informations:

Robert F. Kushner, MD, can be reached at [email protected]; Twitter: @DrRobertKushner.


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Caroline M. Apovian, MD)

Caroline M. Apovian, MD

This is a long awaited paper. The results are remarkable for the sheer size of the weight loss, which is 14.9%. Even if you subtract the 2.4% weight loss in the placebo group, you still get over 12% weight loss for the assigned semaglutides. The difference to other available anti-obesity drugs is basically doubled.

With a typical pod gastrectomy weight loss of around 25%, we also narrow the gap between drugs and surgeries to treat obesity. The side effect profile of semaglutide is also very good, and this remedy has the advantage of being a once-weekly medicine.

Caroline M. Apovian, MD

Endocrine Today member of the editorial board

Co-Director, Center for Weight Management and Wellness

Department of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Hypertension

Brigham and Women’s Hospital

Disclosure: Apovian reports that she is on the Novo Nordisk Scientific Advisory Board.


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