Janssen Inc. announced that Health Canada has approved Invokana (canagliflozin), an oral, once-daily prescription treatment used to lower blood glucose (sugar) levels in adults with type 2 diabetes. Invokana belongs to a new class of medications called sodium glucose co-transporter 2 (SGLT2) inhibitors that offers a novel approach to treating diabetes by increasing the loss of glucose in the urine.
Of the three million Canadians living with diabetes, 90% have been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. Despite the numerous treatment options available, approximately 50% of patients don’t reach the level of glucose control recommended by their doctor.
“Living with diabetes can be extremely frustrating and discouraging,” said Mississauga resident Jatinder Bawa, who has lived with type 2 diabetes for 10 years. “While I have made some lifestyle changes to control my condition, there were times when I wasn’t well-managed and it was hard to always stay motivated without seeing some signs of improvement.”
As glucose is filtered from the blood in the kidneys it is reabsorbed into the bloodstream. SGLT2 is an important transporter responsible for this reabsorption. Invokana selectively inhibits SGLT2 and as a result, promotes the loss of glucose in the urine, lowering blood sugar levels in adults with type 2 diabetes.
“In clinical trials, Invokana had a great impact on patients by improving glycemic control, while reducing body weight and systolic blood pressure,” said Dr. Ronald Goldenberg, endocrinologist, LMC Diabetes & Endocrinology. “Invokana was also associated with a low incidence of hypoglycemia, which is something that is often associated with diabetes medications. This new treatment provides an exciting option for physicians and patients.”
The Health Canada approval of Invokana is based on a comprehensive global Phase 3 clinical program, including 713 Canadians in six studies, which was one of the largest global clinical programs in type 2 diabetes ever conducted. Invokana has been studied as a single agent (monotherapy), in combination with metformin and in combination with other glucose-lowering agents, including insulin, in patients who need further glucose control.
Date: May 27, 2014
Filed Under: Drug Discovery