A new weight-loss drug that’s expected to get FDA approval in the coming months could replace current favorites Wegovy and Ozempic as the “skinny jab” for Hollywood celebrities.
The new drug is called Mounjaro. It is an antidiabetic injectable drug that is making headlines recently, being touted as the most powerful weight-loss drug available.
The drug helped a typical person with obesity who weighed 230 pounds lose up to 50 pounds during a test period of nearly 17 months.
No anti-obesity drug has ever safely made such a difference. Wall Street Journal (WSJ) reported that in the coming months, it is widely expected to get the go-ahead from U.S. health regulators to be prescribed for losing weight and keeping it off, and some patients are already using it unapproved for that purpose.
The advance of Mounjaro, which is already on the market to treat Type 2 diabetes, has excited doctors and patients who have been waiting decades for effective treatments while helping turn its maker, Eli Lilly & Co., into the most valuable standalone pharmaceutical company in the U.S. with a market value of more than $300 billion the WSJ says.
The drug contains semaglutide, which is a type of glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) receptor agonist. GLP-1 receptor agonists work by mimicking the effects of GLP-1, a hormone that is released in response to food intake.
It works by reducing appetite and increasing feelings of fullness. It does this by binding to GLP-1 receptors in the brain, which regulates appetite and food intake. Mounjaro also slows down the rate at which food moves through the stomach, which helps to reduce hunger.
Risks associated with weight-loss drugs
Like all drugs, Mounjaro carries some risks. The most common side effects of Mounjaro include nausea, diarrhea, and constipation. There is also a risk of developing pancreatitis, a serious inflammation of the pancreas. Additionally, Mounjaro has not been studied extensively in pregnant women, so it is not recommended for use during pregnancy.
Anti-obesity drugs are not new. They’ve been available for the treatment of either obesity or type 2 diabetes since as early as 2000.
However, these medications have attracted headlines recently thanks to their popularity among celebrities and influencers. Ozempic has become so widely known in popular culture that it was the subject of jokes at the recent Oscars.
Given the high profile of Ozempic – for example, being branded the Hollywood “skinny jab” – there are concerns that it is being used by people who don’t meet the clinical criteria for overweight or obesity.
Thanks to extraordinary demand for the drugs Ozempic and Wegovy, which cause weight loss, pharmaceutical companies are racing to bring even more potent anti-obesity treatments to market.