The new type 2 diabetes treatment is a daily pill containing empagliflozin, linagliptin and extended release metformin hydrochloride
The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved a new treatment containing three medicines for type 2 diabetes.
Trijardy XR is a once-daily tablet that, working alongside a healthy diet and exercise, lowers blood sugar in adults with the condition.
The new medicine, which can now be sold for human use in the US, is marketed by German pharma company Boehringer Ingelheim and American drug firm Eli Lilly.
Professor Ralph DeFronzo, diabetes division chief at the University of Texas Health Science Center, said the new treatment can ease the burden of taking multiple tablets to control blood sugar in people with type 2 diabetes.
“Many adults living with type 2 diabetes who are already on a treatment plan including multiple medications still struggle to keep their blood sugar under control, and may require additional agents to reach their A1C [a blood test for type 2 diabetes and prediabetes] targets.
“In addition, type 2 diabetes is a complex disease that often requires the use of multiple antidiabetic medications to improve glycemic control.
“Having three different medications in a single tablet is an important advancement in diabetes treatment.”
How does the new type 2 diabetes treatment work?
Trijardy XR combines three well-established medicines for treating type 2 diabetes — a lifelong form of diabetes characterised by a relative lack of insulin in the body, leading to high blood sugar levels.
The first of these medicines is an extended-release version of metformin, which is the most commonly prescribed initial treatment for the condition.
Metformin lowers blood sugar levels for patients by improving the way their body handles insulin — extended-release versions of the drug do this more effectively, and more gradually, meaning they can be taken once a day rather than multiple times.
Trijardy XR also contains empagliflozin, a medicine more commonly referred to by its trade name Jardiance, which helps the kidneys remove glucose (blood sugar) from the bloodstream via urine.
The third medication is linagliptin — a drug sold under the name Tradjenta — which aids the pancreas in creating more insulin and reducing the amount of glucose produced in the liver.
Both of these latter drugs can help reduce blood sugar levels and improve A1C test results for patients — although both are also less preferred than metformin.
The FDA approval of Trijardy XR was based on two randomised open-label trials (where no relevant information is withheld from participants or researchers),
The trials found the safety profile of the three-in-one tablet was consistent with each of its individual components — empagliflozin, linagliptin, and extended-release metformin hydrochloride.