The Food and Drug Administration approved Friday the use of Onglyza, a once-daily treatment for type two diabetes, reported WebMD.
Onglyza, made by Bristol-Myers Squibb and distributed by Bristol-Myers Squibb and AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals, is a DPP-4 inhibitor, which blocks enzymes that degrade GLP-1, a hormone that lowers a patient’s blood sugar by stimulating the pancreas to release insulin.
Since the FDA announced new testing guidelines for diabetes treatments in 2008, Onglyza, or Saxagliptin, is the first drug to be approved, reported the Associated Press.
Patients with type two diabetes have difficulties with breaking down carbohydrates. Their bodies have grown resistant to protein insulin and are at higher risk for heart attacks, kidney problems, blindness and other serious obstacles, reported Reuters.
The FDA said Onglyza will require a post-approval study to evaluate the effects the drug causes to a patient’s heart, reported Reuters. The uproar over heightened risks of heart attacks with GlaxoSmithKline’s Avandia prompted the FDA to reexamine their treatment guidelines, reported the Associated Press.