PHARMACY

Liraglutide may prompt optimal blood-glucose levels in Type 1 diabetics

BY Allison Cerra

BUFFALO, N.Y. — A popular Type 2 diabetes treatment may help Type 1 diabetics achieve control of their blood-glucose levels, according to a small, observational study conducted at the University of Buffalo.

The study examined 14 adult Type 1 diabetics on insulin and added injectable Type 2 diabetes medication liraglutide to their medication regimen for periods ranging from one week to 24 weeks. Although all of the Type 1 diabetes patients had optimal blood-glucose levels at the beginning of the study, lead author Paresh Dandona, professor of medicine at the University of Buffalo’s School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, said that some patients experience "glycemic excursions," in which blood-glucose measures reach hypoglycemic or hyperglycemic levels.

Dandona and colleagues found, however, that within one to two days of beginning treatment with liraglutide, such glycemic excursions were offset but reversed just as quickly when treatment was discontinued, revealing that liraglutide likely was responsible for these effects and could be an effective add-on therapy to insulin.

"The addition of liraglutide to insulin therapy in these well-controlled Type 1 diabetics resulted in a significant and rapid reduction in glycemic excursions and, as a consequence, a rapid reduction in the amount of insulin they needed to take," Dandona said. "We will be investigating in detail the hypothesis that it is liraglutide’s ability to suppress glucagon that significantly reduces the wide swings in blood glucose levels that Type 1 diabetics — even those with very good glucose control — live with everyday."

The research has been published online ahead of print in the European Journal of Endocrinology. It also was recently presented at the annual meeting of the Endocrine Society in Boston.

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FDA rejects Teva’s request to block Watson’s generic Seasonique

BY Alaric DeArment

PARSIPPANY, N.J. — A federal court has rejected Teva Pharmaceutical Industries’ efforts to prevent Watson from launching a generic version of one of its drugs, Watson said Friday.

The U.S. District Court for the District of Nevada denied Duramed Pharmaceuticals’ request for an injunction to keep Watson’s generic version of the contraceptive Seasonique (levonorgestrel and ethinyl estradiol 0.15 mg/0.03 mg) and ethinyl estradiol 0.01 mg from being launched.

Seasonique is made by Teva Women’s Health, the successor of Duramed.

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Armada inks deal with Emdeon

BY Alaric DeArment

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. — Armada Health Care and Emdeon have entered an agreement to support prior authorization management through Armada’s ReachRx suite of services, Armada said.

Emdeon — which contracts with pharmacies and their service providers to simplify and improve end-to-end prescription processes — will use its network to support and enhance prior authorization management for Armada member pharmacies, automating data exchange in real-time, and aligning the solutions with standard pharmacy workflow. Armada said those services would enhance its ability to offer member pharmacies "a turnkey solution to managing time-consuming prior authorizations both quickly and effectively."

According to Armada, the inability of pharmacies to provide effective prior authorization services resulted in patient attrition and lost revenue, because they could not handle the submission of clinical documentation and extensive follow-up with prescribers, unless they had necessary staffing and resources.

Armada’s prior authorization services include automatic transfer of claims data to the Armada platform, status follow-up with prescriber and payer, co-pay assistance information, real-time status updates via the Armada Web portal and full HIPAA compliance.

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