Amgen is eyeing entry into the thriving weight loss drug market, but with a unique approach distinct from current methods.

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Amgen is adopting a fresh strategy to make its mark in the competitive realm of weight loss medications.

The biotech giant is exploring a unique injectable treatment called MariTide, which stands out from existing options like Novo Nordisk and Eli Lilly’s injections. What sets MariTide apart is its potential to not only aid weight loss but also help patients maintain it after discontinuation. Moreover, Amgen is testing a less frequent dosing schedule, aiming for once a month or even less, which could offer greater convenience compared to current weekly treatments.

While the weight loss drug market is currently dominated by Novo Nordisk and Eli Lilly, analysts project significant growth potential, potentially opening doors for new contenders like Amgen. However, Amgen’s progress is still in the early stages, with limited data from small clinical trials. Yet, the company is optimistic, planning to release initial data from ongoing trials later this year.

Amgen’s approach with MariTide involves activating the gut hormone receptor GLP-1 while blocking another hormone receptor called GIP. This unique mechanism is based on genetic research suggesting that blocking GIP could lead to lower fat mass and body weight.

Early data from a phase one trial showed promising results, with patients experiencing significant weight loss, especially with higher doses of MariTide. Additionally, the drug demonstrated potential for sustained weight loss even after discontinuation.

Unlike existing weekly injections, MariTide’s less frequent dosing schedule could appeal to patients seeking convenience. Moreover, the drug’s prolonged presence in the body due to a monoclonal antibody component may offer an advantage over current therapies.

Amgen’s ongoing phase two trial aims to provide more insights into MariTide’s efficacy and safety, exploring various dose strengths and schedules. Initial results from this trial, expected later this year, will shed more light on MariTide’s potential as a competitive player in the weight loss drug market.

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