Zealand summons Novo Nordisk to resuscitate floundering diabetes newcomer Zegalogue was reported by Fraiser Kansteiner for FiercePharma.com, 7 September 2022.

Novo Nordisk LogoZealand said it has forged a global license and development pact with Novo Nordisk to take the marketing reins on Zegalogue—also Zealand’s first launch. The drug won FDA approval last March for severe low blood sugar in diabetes, but so far, sales of the med and its companion diagnostic V-GO have failed to impress.

With the Zegalogue launch imploding, Zealand in March drafted plans to swap in a new CEO, Adam Steensberg, M.D., and to streamline its commercial operations. Specifically, Zealand planned to cull 90% of its U.S. workforce and scale back annual operating expenses by at least 35% versus 2021.

The new deal with Novo will furnish Zealand with 25 million Danish kroner ($3.3 million) upfront, which could grow to upwards of 45 million kroner (about $6 million) if the companies hit certain near-term development, regulatory, and manufacturing milestones on Zegalogue.

Read more:  Zealand summons Novo Nordisk to resuscitate floundering diabetes newcomer Zegalogue

Sugar disrupts microbiome and immune function, leading to metabolic disorders by Robby Berman was posted on MedicalNewsToday.com, 6 September 2022.

A new study found that sugar consumption leads to a loss of important immune cells in mice. Sugar appears to tip the microbiome balance away from bacteria that support immune cells in favor of non-beneficial bacteria. The study authors draw a strong connection between the loss of these immune cells and cardiometabolic diseases, such as diabetes. Research shows that an estimated 70% of the immune system resides in the gut. Immune cells in the gut interact with the microbiome — the bacteria and fungi that live in the intestines — linking diet directly to the health of the immune system.

A new study in mice, which appears in Cell, has found that dietary sugar indirectly leads to a loss of critical immune cells.  Paul Gill, a research fellow at the Department of Microbial Disease, Eastman Dental Institute, University College London in the U.K., who was not involved in this study, said that “the study authors have outlined a new mechanism by which high doses of sugar impact the gut microbiota and immune system.”

“A high-sugar diet promoted the growth of a bacterial species that outcompetes commensal ‘good’ bacteria. A consequence of this gut dysbiosis,” explained Gill, “is a reduction in a specific type of immune cell called a T-helper 17 cell [TH17], which was found to protect mice from high fat diet-induced obesity.”

This protective effect of Th17 cells is another novel finding. The study authors found that Th17 cells reduce the absorption of fats by the gut lining, which reduces the severity of metabolic disease and weight gain.

Read more:  Sugar disrupts microbiome and immune function

Cravings for fatty foods traced to gut-brain connection was released by Columbia University, 7 September 2022.   

A dieter wrestling with cravings for fatty foods might be tempted to blame their tongue: the delicious taste of butter or ice cream is hard to resist. But new research investigating the source of our appetites has uncovered an entirely new connection between the gut and the brain that drives our desire for fat.

At Columbia’s Zuckerman Institute, scientists studying mice found that fat entering the intestines triggers a signal. Conducted along nerves to the brain, this signal drives a desire for fatty foods. Published September 7, 2022, in Nature, the new study raises the possibility of interfering with this gut-brain connection to help prevent unhealthy choices and address the growing global health crisis caused by overeating.

“We live in unprecedented times, in which the overconsumption of fats and sugars is causing an epidemic of obesity and metabolic disorders,” said first author Mengtong Li, Ph.D., a postdoctoral researcher in the lab of the Zuckerman Institute’s Charles Zuker, Ph.D., supported by the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. “If we want to control our insatiable desire for fat, science is showing us that the key conduit driving these cravings is a connection between the gut and the brain.”

“Our research is showing that the tongue tells our brain what we like, such as things that taste sweet, salty or fatty,” said Dr. Zuker, who is also a professor of biochemistry and molecular biophysics and of neuroscience at Columbia’s Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons. “The gut, however, tells our brain what we want, what we need.”

Read more: Cravings for fatty foods traced to gut-brain connection

DPAC (Diabetes Patient Advocacy Coalition) files suit against HHS was announced on 31 August 2022.  

DPAC, along with the Diabetes Leadership Council and the HIV + Hepatitis Policy Institute, has filed a legal complaint challenging a federal rule that enables health insurers to void the value of drug manufacturer copay assistance toward patients’ cost-sharing obligations. The claim asserts that the rule from HHS violates federal law and directly contradicts the government’s own definition of cost-sharing. Often referred to as “copay accumulator adjustment programs”, these policies result in the insurance plan getting the deductible paid twice – once by the patient and once by the manufacturer – and patients forced to pay full list prices after assistance expires, often making their medications unaffordable.

YOU CAN HELP by submitting the following form if you or someone you know has been impacted by a copay accumulator program.  The more stories we share, the more powerful our message is that HHS has violated patient rights.

You can also learn more about the practice of copay accumulators by checking out our DPAC Brown Bag Series





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