Novo Nordisk announced that the once-weekly semaglutide injection for the treatment of type 2 diabetes is now available in Bangladesh.
The pharmaceutical company made the announcement during the launching ceremony of the diabetes control drug held at the Intercontinental Hotel in the capital on Thursday, said a press release issued by Novo Nordisk.
President of Diabetic Association of Bangladesh (BADAS) Professor AK Azad Khan; Vice President of Novo Nordisk Business Area Southeast Asia Jay Thyagarajan; Winnie Estrup Petersen, Ambassador of Denmark to Bangladesh; Md Sayef Uddin, Secretary General of BADAS; Dr Mahbubur Rahman, director of medical and quality of Novo Nordisk; Kamal Hossain Palok, director of business unit GLP -1 and obesity and Gazi Towhid Ahmed, public affairs manager of Novo Nordisk were present in the programme.
Alongside diet and exercise, semaglutide can either be used alone or in addition to other products for diabetes management, the release said.
President of Diabetic Association of Bangladesh (BADAS) Professor AK Azad Khan said "More than half of the people living with type 2 diabetes in Bangladesh do not have their condition in control; on average they spend more than seven years uncontrolled on oral medication before treatment is intensified."
"Being able to offer a medicine such as once-weekly semaglutide with its superior blood glucose control, reduction in body weight, and proven cardiovascular benefits, is a huge step forward in the management of this complex condition," added Khan.
Vice President of Novo Nordisk Business Area Southeast Asia Jay Thyagarajan said, "The clinical data— SUSTAIN trial—shows that semaglutide provides unsurpassed efficacy in terms of blood glucose and weight reduction, helping up to 80% of patients reach treatment target."
"As a once-weekly treatment, I believe semaglutide will help address the needs of patients living with diabetes in Bangladesh," added Jay.
Semaglutide is available in Bangladesh following of a series of clinical trials involving over 10,000 adults with type 2 diabetes.
The results consistently showed greater reductions in both blood sugar and body weight compared with commonly used treatments for type 2 diabetes,1-4,8,9 as well as cardiovascular benefits, in people with type 2 diabetes, the release said.
Ambassador of Denmark to Bangladesh Winnie Estrup Petersen said, "Novo Nordisk is playing a vital role in introducing research and development based innovative diabetes treatment to the diabetic patients of this country."
Secretary General of BADAS Md Sayef Uddin said, "As part of the Diabetic Association of Bangladesh's awareness and prevention programme, Novo Nordisk is closely working with the association in creating nationwide awareness and education to address the burden of diabetes."
Novo Nordisk, in partnership with Eskayef Pharmaceuticals, a leading pharmaceutical company owned by Transcom Group, has been manufacturing insulin in Bangladesh since 2012. Transcom Distribution Company distributes the insulin across the country, added the release.