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Insulin combination treats low blood sugar in diabetes patients, study finds


DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — A combination of two insulins made by Novo Nordisk reduced abnormally low blood sugar in diabetes patients, according to study results presented at a medical conference.

Presenting at the International Diabetes Federation's 21st World Diabetes Congress in Dubai, Novo Nordisk said the combination of insulin degludec and insulin aspart reduced the overall occurrence of low blood sugar, also known as hypoglycemia, during the day and at night for patients with Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes. The company markets insulin aspart under the NovoLog and NovoRapid brands, while insulin degludec is still in clinical development.

The combination also lowered the amount of sugar in patients' blood plasma after a period of not eating, a measure known as fasting plasma glucose.

"The unique way in which insulin degludec/insulin aspart works, with the basal insulin providing an ultra-long and steady action profile, plus a bolus boost of insulin aspart, provides a simple way to introduce mealtime dosing at any meal," Novo Nordisk corporate VP and global chief medical officer Alan Moses said. "These benefits, along with the reduced risk of hypoglycemia and improved [fasting plasma glucose]  shown in these studies, are very promising for people living with diabetes."

A second study also showed rates of hypoglycemia that were 37% lower in Type 1 diabetes patients who took the combination and rapid-acting mealtime insulin doses compared with those who took the mealtime doses with insulin detemir, which the company sells under the Levemir brand.

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