A drug study for injectable type 2 injection of liraglutide has shown that treatment is effective in treating children with this condition.
The study tested how effective liraglutide is in children, as there are currently only two types of drugs, metformin and insulin, approved for treatment under 18 in the US. More than 30 different types of drugs are available for adults.
Liraglutide, sold as Victoza, has been approved for use in adults with type 2 diabetes in the US since January 2010.
Co-author's study Jane Lynch, a professor of pediatrics at the University of Texas (UT) Health San Antonio, said, "We were unable to get medicines approved for children outside of metformin and insulin."
More than 130 children aged 10 to 17 years with type 2 diabetes were involved in the clinical trial. Half of them received liraglutide and metformin tablets and the remaining participants received metformin plus placebo.
Dr. Lynch said: "This drug for adult treatment was very effective in our study of type 2 diabetes and was well tolerated. We urgently need additional options for the treatment of type 2 diabetes in our under 18s.
"If this drug was approved, it would be a fantastic new option to supplement oral metformin therapy as an alternative to insulin for our teens and adolescents with type 2 diabetes."
Overall, 64% of the liraglutide group reached HbA1c levels below 53 mmol / mol (7%) at week 26 compared to 37% in the placebo group.
In adults, liraglutide has been shown to be effective in helping people reduce weight. In this study, there were no significant differences in body weight changes in children overall between study start and end.
More than 1,000 children with type 2 diabetes have been diagnosed in the Diabetes Institute in Texas since 2005, and only five were the youngest, so scientists thought that more treatment options should be sought.
The results of the study were now presented to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the European Medicines Agency (EMA) for organizations to consider whether treatment can be given to children 10 years of age and older with type 2 diabetes.
The results of the study were presented at the 2019 Pediatric Academic Meeting in Baltimore and were also published in the New England Journal of Medicine.