Exenatide Tied to Modest Weight Loss for Obese Women

A subset of women, termed high responders, lost 5 percent or more of their body weight

MONDAY, Nov. 7 (HealthDay News) -- For obese women without diabetes, short-term treatment with exenetide is associated with modest weight loss and decreased waist circumference, with a subset of women benefiting from significant weight loss, according to a study published online Oct. 31 in Diabetes Care.

Jody Dushay, M.D., from Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, and colleagues investigated the effect of exenatide treatment on weight loss and metabolic parameters in 41 obese women without diabetes (aged 48 ± 11 years; body mass index, 33.1 ± 4.1 kg/m²). Participants were enrolled in a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover study, involving two treatment periods of 16 weeks each, separated by a washout period of three weeks. No lifestyle intervention was given to the participants. Change in body weight was the primary outcome.

The investigators found that women treated with exenatide lost an average of 2.49 kg, and those treated with placebo gained an average of 0.43 kg. At two weeks, weight loss with exenatide treatment was noted, and the degree of weight loss was stratified. High responders (30 percent) lost 5 percent or more of their body weight, moderate responders (39 percent) lost less than 5 percent of their body weight, and nonresponders (31 percent) gained weight. A significant reduction in waist circumference was seen with exenatide treatment. Exenatide treatment was associated with more nausea than placebo; however, the severity decreased over time and was not associated with weight loss.

"A subset of individuals demonstrated robust weight loss that was detected very early in the course of treatment," the authors write.

The study was supported by Eli Lilly and Company and Amylin Pharmaceuticals.

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