FDA panel backs Novo Nordisk injection for obesity

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal health experts say Novo Nordisk's diabetes drug Victoza should be approved for a new use in treating obesity.

The panel of Food and Drug Administration advisers voted 14-1 that the injectable drug's benefits outweigh its risks for patients who are obese or dangerously overweight.

The FDA first approved Victoza in 2010 as a daily injection to help control type 2 diabetes. The drug is part of a new class of medicines called GLP-1 agonists, which spur the pancreas to create extra insulin after meals. People with diabetes have trouble breaking down food into energy due to problems producing or using insulin.

Danish drugmaker Novo Nordisk now wants the FDA to approve the drug as an obesity treatment based on company studies showing significant weight loss in most patients.