New treatment may curb hypoglycemia in children with insulin disorders

FRIDAY, April 15, 2022 (HealthDay News) — A new therapy corrects hypoglycemia in children with a genetic condition that causes the pancreas to produce too much insulin, researchers say.

Congenital hyperinsulinism (IH) is the most common cause of persistent hypoglycemia (hypoglycemia) in infants and children.

“There are currently very few medical treatments for IH, and these treatments are of limited effectiveness while being associated with significant side effects,” Dr. Diva De León-Crutchlow said in a press release from the Institute. Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. She is chief of endocrinology and diabetes and director of the congenital hyperinsulinism center at the hospital.

De León-Crutchlow and his colleagues developed a treatment called exendin-(9-39). They say it could prevent hypoglycemia in patients with IH and may eliminate the need for removal of the pancreas, a current standard treatment for severe diffuse IH.

In a new study, the team tested the drug’s effectiveness during fasting and after a meal in 16 children, aged 10 months to 15 years. All had persistent hypoglycemia due to HI.

After fasting for about 12 hours, patients received six-hour infusions of three different doses (low, medium, or high) of the drug or saline solution. For another two days, a subset of eight patients received either the high dose exendin-(9-39) or saline in a mixed meal tolerance test and a protein tolerance test. oral.

Fasting hypoglycaemia was reduced by 76% in patients who received the medium dose and by 84% in those who received the high dose of the drug. Additionally, administration of exendin-(9-39) during the protein challenge resulted in an 82% decrease in hypoglycemia, the results showed.

The mid-dose group also had a 20% increase in fasting blood sugar, while the high-dose group had a 28% increase in blood sugar after a meal and a 30% increase in blood sugar after a meal. protein challenge, according to the study. The results were published April 13 in the journal Diabetic treatments.

“This study is further evidence supporting the use of exendin-(9-39), which has been awarded Breakthrough Therapy designation for the treatment of IH, and we look forward to pushing this therapy in a phase 3 trial,” said De León-Crutchlow, the study’s lead author.

More information

There is more on congenital hyperinsulinism at Congenital hyperinsuliNopeinternational n..

SOURCE: Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, press release, April 13, 2022

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Rachel J. Bradford