Sanofi's GLP-1 drug hits promising marks in PhIII diabetes trial

Sanofi-Aventis' GLP-1 diabetes drug lixisenatide impressed analysts with a solid set of top-line results demonstrating its effectiveness--in combination with the bestselling Lantus--for controlling blood sugar. Adding a daily injection of lixisenatide helped Type 2 diabetes patients who had trouble controlling the disease with basal insulin alone.

Analysts at Bryan, Garnier has already noted that the drug's primary value for Sanofi lies in a combo treatment with Lantus. As Bloomberg notes, Sanofi is lagging behind Eli Lilly and Novo Nordisk in developing a GLP-1 therapy that spurs the pancreas to produce more insulin.

"The results of this study show that lixisenatide once-daily in combination with basal insulin provides a significant reduction in A1C," said Sanofi R&D chief Marc Cluzel. "Adding lixisenatide, a new GLP-1 with a strong post-prandial glucose effect, to a basal insulin may offer patients a new treatment approach to better control glucose and prevent long-term complications."

Lixisenatide was originally developed by Denmark's Zealand Pharma from ingredients found in the spit of the Gila monster.

- here's the Zealand release