Mounjaro and Zepbound are effective for long-term weight loss

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Mounjaro injection pens on display at Rachel Graham’s home in Carlsbad, California.Photo credit: Washington Post/Getty Images
  • A new study finds that long-term use of tezeparatide (Mounjaro and Zepbound) may be critical for maintaining the weight loss results promoted by the drug.
  • Both those taking the drug and the placebo control group maintained some weight loss during the study, but those taking the drug lost or lost more weight.
  • Researchers say the study highlights the importance of making lifestyle changes while taking weight-loss drugs.

People who continued to take the weight loss drug tilsiparatide had better results in losing weight and maintaining weight than people who took the drug short-term. new research Discover.

Previous Phase 3 clinical trials showed that tirzepatide (sold under the brand names Mounjaro and the recently approved Zepbound brand) resulted in weight loss of 20% or more after 72 weeks compared with a control group taking a placebo.

The new Phase 3 trial included 670 participants and lasted a total of 88 weeks. All participants received tezepatide for 36 weeks. Participants were then randomly assigned to receive an additional year of treatment or a placebo injection.

Researchers reported that those who continued taking the drug lost an additional 5 percent of their weight, for an overall weight loss of about 25 percent. Researchers at Weill Cornell Medical College and NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital in New York reported that some weight loss was maintained despite a 14 percent weight gain in the placebo group.

The study was sponsored by Eli Lilly and Company, the manufacturer of Mounjaro and Zepbound.

Tezepatide Belongs to a class of drugs called glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) receptor agonists, which includes drugs such as semaglutide, sold under the trade names Wegovy and Ozempic.

However, tezepatide differs from semaglutide in some important ways.

Dr. Dan Maselli, an obesity medicine physician and bariatric endoscopist at True You Weight Loss in Atlanta, explains that tezepatide is a single molecule that not only binds and activates the GLP1 receptor, but also binds and activates a second receptor— Glucose-dependent insulinotropic polypeptide (GIP) receptor. who did not participate in this study.

He told us that GIP receptor activation has a similar effect to GLP1 receptor activation, and the synergistic effect of this dual binding may explain why the weight loss with tilsiparatide was more significant than that with semaglutide. Medical News Today.

Experts say the additional weight-loss benefits can help people feel it’s worth continuing to take the medication.

Dr. Mir Ali, a bariatric surgeon and medical director of the MemorialCare Surgical Bariatric Center at Orange Coast Medical Center in California, said the study is consistent with other studies showing high relapse rates among bariatric patients after they stop taking their medications. did not participate in this study.

Studies show that sipalatide has better weight loss results than other medications, even Ozempic.He tells us that when patients see good weight loss results, they are more likely to continue with their treatment plan Medical News Today.

Like other similar drugs, most weight loss is achieved within the first few months after starting treatment.

After that, weight loss gradually increases, experts say, leading one study to show the importance of continuing to take medications to maintain weight.

Maselli said the trial has implications for understanding the functions and limitations of tilsiparatide. We can see here that over the next year, not only did the subjects continue to lose weight, but they also experienced improvements in cardiometabolic disease markers, such as insulin resistance (e.g., hemoglobin A1c), cholesterol, body mass index, and waist circumference. Taken together, these findings suggest that tilsiparatide is a powerful tool for people seeking treatment for obesity.

However, while one might argue that it is not surprising that a study sponsored by a drug manufacturer might find that taking the drug long-term is the best course of action, most experts consulted said the quality of the study was solid .

Dr. Meredith Warner, an orthopedic surgeon in Baton Rouge, La., and the company’s founder, noted that the study was sponsored by and primarily written by Eli Lilly employees, with the lead author and other authors also working with the pharmaceutical industry. There are very close contacts and many conflicts are reported. Well Theory was not involved in the study.

But overall, Warner told Medical News Todaythe study had good power, and the statistical analysis appeared to be unproblematic.

Instead, the study goes some way to confirming what doctors say they already know about weight loss.

[The study] Maselli said that emphasizing that obesity is a chronic, complex, progressive and relapsing disease state, these drugs are treatments, not cures. By the end of week 88, subjects in the placebo group from weeks 36 to 88 had regained more than half the weight they had lost from weeks 0 to 36 of taking tezeparatide. This underscores what the medical community in the field of obesity medicine understood in the wake of the semaglutide literature: long-term continued use of these drugs is necessary to maintain weight and cardiometabolic disease improvements.

Of course, this is frustrating for patients, as many want to truncate rather than add to their medication list, especially in the current climate with significant out-of-pocket costs and associated medications. Supply disruptions lead to unpredictable access.

That said, lifestyle changes also play an important role in restoring metabolic health, and no drug or medical procedure is a cure-all.

Regardless of the intervention, if patients don’t make permanent, long-term dietary and lifestyle changes, they will regain the weight, Ali said. Medication and surgery are tools to help patients make these changes; like other tools, it can work well if used correctly.

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